MLB Picks: Will Giants Keep Winning Streak Alive in Today's Double-Header vs. Rockies?

Mark Lathrop

Saturday, May 23, 2015 1:35 PM GMT

The Giants looking to make it a 9 winning streak on Saturday's games against the Rockies, Our handicapper looks at the matchups and gives his MLB Picks on both games.

It’s a double header today in Denver as the San Francisco Giants continue their series against the Colorado Rockies. The Giants are on a hot streak and have won seven games straight putting them only a game and a half back of the NL West leading Los Angeles Dodgers. The Giants offense was the story last night as they belted 14 hits and put up 11 runs in an 11-8 win. The Rockies were down 7-0 before getting a run on the board, but had 13 hits themselves to put the game way over the total. The game was 1-0 after 5 innings before all hell broke loose on each pitching staff.

The Giants lineup overall has been impressive lately, with 8 regular starters hitting .289 or better. Buster Posey, Brandon Belt, and Angel Pagan lead the way with .311, .317, and .323 batting averages, respectively.

 

Game 1
Projected Rockies starter Jordan Lyles had a decent April before coming off of the rails in two straight starts against the Arizona Diamondbacks in May. Two starts ago; he was drilled on the right hand by a line drive off the bat of Albert Pujols. That happens to be his pitching hand. Lyles was able to make his next start, giving up 4 earned runs to the anemic Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday. The hot San Francisco lineup should provide quite a test for him as he is currently sporting a 1.47 WHIP.

Chris Heston takes the mound for the Giants coming off of an awful game in which he lasted only two innings while giving up 5 earned runs. His performance was shortened by a rain delay, which likely contributed to the big 2nd inning the Reds had off of him. Either way, after a solid start to the season, Heston has been swapping good and bad starts for six weeks now. The last ‘good’ start was a doozy, a complete game 10-strikeout performance against the Houston Astros.

 

The Pick
I really like the matchup of the San Francisco Giants’ offense against Jordan Lyles in this game, as he gave up 2 home runs and 6 earned runs in his last outing against San Francisco. I’m going with a pair bet as I think the value play is dependent on the Giants putting up five runs or more, so take Over 10 runs and the Giants on the money line as your  MLB pick.

Free MLB Pick: Giants -106 & Over at Pinnacle

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Game 2
Yusmeiro Petit of the Giants comes out of long relief to get the spot start in the second game of this double header. He hasn’t pitched more than three innings in an appearance this year, so expect the rest of the bullpen to get in on the action as well. It should be noted that Petit has already pitched 3.1 innings of shutout ball against the Rockies this year. David Hale of the Rockies is being called up from AAA to make this spot start and his MLB debut. He wasn’t pitching well in AAA (0-2, 6.93 ERA) but was called up out of necessity with the Rockies pitching staff in flux.

With both of these starters not expected to go deep into the game we should be sure to look at the bullpens for both teams. In this aspect the San Francisco Giants have a clear advantage, with a team bullpen ERA of 3.35 versus the Rockies team bullpen ERA of 4.75. The Rockies bullpen has the second worse ERA in the MLB in fact, only behind the Oakland Athletics.

 

The Pick
While there isn’t a current MLB odds line open on this game as we go to press, the early lean is heavily toward the Giants against the rookie starter who hasn’t clearly earned this start. A total bet could be a risky play with the strength of the Giants bullpen, but keep an eye on the first game as they could be in “last man standing” status after Petit leaves. We could have short rain delays all day in Denver that could reign havoc on the pitching staffs. If the bullpens are taxed on the first game (as they certainly could be with my pick on the Over), look for the second game to be high scoring as well. We could see a position player pitching for the Rockies by the end of the day. Wouldn’t that be fun!

Free MLB Pick: Over at BetOnline