The L.A. Dodgers are back in first place in the top heavy NL West, with Colorado just 1.5 games behind and nipping at their heels. Those betting baseball understand this is litmus test for the Rockies.
Having just lost home series to Arizona in which their pitchers were bludgeoned for 29 runs, there are potential signs Colorado young pitchers who were thrown into the fire are wilting a bit. With Los Angeles hotter than a mouthful of habanera peppers in winning 12 of 13 and the last seven in row, rugged test for the Rocks.
Speaking of tests, I will have several at this location making MLB picks this weekend starting with this conflict, trying to better a 19-12 stretch.
Kyle Freeland (8-4, 3.32 ERA) was the eighth pick in the 2014 draft and in his rookie season he’s emerged as Colorado’s ace with Jon Gray still sidelined. Freeland relies on a heavy sinker, which induced ground balls 60 percent of the time. When asked what he would like to improve on, he quickly states “walks” with 32 in just over 81 innings. In two starts versus Los Angeles, Freeland has a 1.80 ERA, both Rockies victories.
Alex Wood (7-0, 1.90) is the first Dodgers hurler to be unbeaten after 10 starts since Orel Hershiser in 1985. Wood has always been well regarded by scouts, but quite injury-prone and extremely inconsistent until this season.