Colorado and San Diego, who split four games in Denver two weeks ago, continue their NL West divisional rivalry when they open a three-game series at Petco Park Friday night.
Rockies-Padres Friday Betting Odds
Most of the MLB odds opened San Diego and Ian Kennedy at around -150 over Colorado and rookie Eddie Butler, with a total of seven runs. Most books then dropped that price about a dime, to around -140.
Also, Bovada was listing the Padres as -210 favorites to win this series, with the Rockies getting +170.
San Diego just got swept three games at home by Houston, losing Monday 9-4, Tuesday 14-3 and Wednesday 7-2. That's 30-9 for the series, and that ain't very good.
Just before that the Padres lost two of three to the Dodgers, and just before that they lost the last two games of a four-game series with these Rockies. So San Diego has lost seven of its last eight games.
Colorado just lost two of three games at Arizona this week, winning Monday's series opener 5-4 but losing Tuesday 12-5 and Wednesday 9-1. Just before that the Rockies split two games with San Francisco, and just before that they split four games with these Padres.
So Colorado, at 11-10, sits in second place in the NL West, two games back of the first-place Dodgers, while San Diego, at 11-12, occupies third place, three games out of first.
This is the second meeting between these teams this season; two weeks ago they split four games at Coors Field, with the totals splitting 2-2.
Last year Colorado took the season series from San Diego 10 games to nine.
Kennedy is 0-for-two on quality starts this season. In his season debut back on April 9 he left the game after 2 1/3 innings with a pulled hamstring, which required a stint on the DL. Then in his first start back last Saturday he got bombed for eight runs in less than five innings in an 11-8 loss to the Dodgers.
Last year Kennedy started three times against Colorado, allowing seven runs and 20 base-runners (hits + walks) through 20 innings. San Diego won two of those three games, and two of those games stayed UNDER the totals.
Butler is 0-for-four on quality starts this season, but mostly because he's been on a short leash. Last Friday he gave up four runs and nine hits through six innings of a 6-4 victory over San Francisco, so on the season he's allowed eight runs and 37 base-runners (24 hits + 13 walks) through 22 innings. Colorado is 3-1 in Butler's starts, with the totals going 1-2-1.
This will be Butler's first-ever start against San Diego.
The Fire Brigades
The Colorado bullpen ranks 17th in the Majors with a 3.89 ERA, going eight-for-11 on save opportunities, while the San Diego pen ranks 29th with a 5.35 ERA, going seven-for-ten on save opps.
Friday's Battling Splits
Colorado owns a .324 team OBP and a .448 team slugging percentage against right-handed pitching this season.
San Diego owns a .288 OBP and a .405 slugging percentage against righties this year.
Colorado is down a couple of late-inning relievers, so for the moment it looks like John Axford will close for the Rockies. So far Axford, who saved 100 games for Milwaukee a few seasons ago, is three-for-three on saves this year, but he has allowed two base-runners in each of his last two appearances, covering one inning each.
Rockies-Padres Free Pick
Kennedy is a bit of question mark at the moment, after his most recent performance coming off the DL, so we'll call the pitching match-up a wash. That takes us to the sticks, where Colorado owns an edge. So we like the underdog Rockies for tonight. Also, with a little help from the bullpens these teams should be able to come up with eight runs tonight.