Bet of the Day – San Francisco Giants at Colorado Rockies, Sept 24, 2010

San Francisco Giants (+115) at Colorado Rockies (-125), Over/Under 8

Yesterday’s bet, Miami Hurricanes at Pittsburgh Panthers, was a loser.  Wasn’t even close.  It was the end of a 5 day win streak.  Tonight, the NL West-leading Giants kickoff a series with the Rockies.  While the Giants are in the thick of the NL West race, this series is Colorado’s last chance.  It will be a fun series

Last night, the Giants jumped on the Cubs early for a 13-0 win to regain the NL West lead (it was a bit of a fluke game, so don’t get too enamored with 13 runs).  The Giants have won 4 of their last 7.  Their batting has been decent (.331 OBP for 4.9 runs per game), but their pitching has been excellent. Over the last 7 games, they have allowed a stingy .181 batting average with a .225 OBP for only 1.6 runs per game.  Tonight, Tim Lincecum takes the mound (14-10, 1.307 WHIP).  Wonder boy Lincecum hasn’t been his usual self in 2010 but has pitched well of late.  Lincecum is 6-5 with a 3.55 ERA and 1.410 WHIP in 14 starts against the Rockies (1-2 in 2010).  He will need a huge game against a desperate Rockies team.

Five days ago, the Rockies were 1 game back of the NL West lead and had won 13 of 15 games.  Today they are 3.5 games back and have lost 4 games in a row.  The good news, they are back home at Coors Field where they are 51-24 and .035 OBP points better for the season.  The Rockies continued to hit well on the road, but their pitching wasn’t very good.  Over the last 7 games, they hit .277 with a .364 OBP for 6.9 runs per game, but their opponents hit .287 with a .349 OBP for 5.9 runs per game (in that 7 game sample there was a Rockies 12-2 win to skew the runs per game).  Scoring won’t likely be a problem for the Rockies tonight but starting pitcher Jhoulys Chacin (9-9, 1.293 WHIP) will need another strong outing.  Chacin is coming off an 8 inning 9 hit, 0 walk and 0 run outing.  Chacin doesn’t give up many hits or home runs but has bouts with free bases.  Chacin’s best outings have come in 2’s, so expect another good effort tonight.

My baseball model predicts Colorado 5.80 over San Francisco 3.61 for 9.41 total runs.  This is a big spread for my model.  Digging into the home/away stats, Colorado is a better hitting team.  Colorado’s bullpen allows fewer walks and hits.  The key variance contributors are Colorado’s scoring efficiency and Tim Lincecum’s hits and walks allowed.  What does this mean?  If Lincecum pitches to his 2010 road average and Colorado’s home scoring efficiency is at average, the Rockies will be hard to beat (they are actually so efficient at home they could be a full deviation off the average and would still likely win).  It also means, San Francisco has to score runs.

An interesting note from Pregame.com’s Sportbook Spy, of the 2342 bets on this game’s money line, 76% are on the Giants.  The line is moving toward the Rockies, and to me indicates some smart money is on the Rockies.

I don’t normally take a team on a losing streak, but tonight I am taking the Rockies.  Here’s why.  This is it for the Rockies, they have 10 games remaining and a loss tonight would probably be the end.  The Rockies are great at home.  The Rockies bats are still warm.  Jhoulys Chacin is on form and has pitched well against the Giants in the past.  Last, Lincecum’s name alone drives the price down and there is betting value with the Rockies.   Bet on the Colorado Rockies on the money line -120.  Follow me on Twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

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Bet of the Day – Cincinnati Reds at Colorado Rockies, Sept. 7, 2010

Cincinnati Reds (+115) at Colorado Rockies (-125), Over/Under 9,  8:40 ET

Yesterday’s bet was a loser.  Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda.  Today’s bet is on the NL Central-leading Reds at the Rockies.  The Cincinnati Reds sit comfortably atop the NL Central, leading the Cardinals by 6 games.  The Rockies would need a similar run to last year’s to have a wildcard chance.

The Reds have won 4 of the last 7 batting .271 with .356 OBP for 4.9 runs per game.  That stretch included a sweep of the Brewers and dropping 2 of 3 at St. Louis.  Steady play should make sure they have a playoff spot.  Johnny Cueto (12-4, 1.251 WHIP) starts tonight.  Cueto has been solid this year and has pitched well in his last 2 starts.  He returns from a quick trip to the Dominican Republic for a death in the family.

The Rockies are playing well now.  They have won 4 of the last 7, including the last 4 straight.  The Rockies have hit .283 with a .357 OBP for 6.0 runs per game over that stretch.  Home teams win 68.2% of the time after winning 3 straight when playing at home (up to 6 wins).  It should also be noted that Colorado is a better home team.  They are 44-22 (.666 win %) batting .302 with a .372 OBP at home.  Starting pitcher Jhoulys Chacin (7-9, 1.277 WHIP) has been strong in his last few starts.  Chacin has never pitched against the Reds.

My baseball model simulated the game with Colorado as the clear winner; Colorado 5.51 to Cincinnati 4.26 for 9.77 total runs.  The pitching is very close on paper, but Colorado’s ability to get runners on base and scoring efficiency are clearly an advantage at home.  The clear variance contributor is Colorado’s scoring efficiency.  If they hit and score to average, they should win the game.  With a -125 money line and the projected score having more than a 1 standard deviation spread, the betting value is with Colorado.

I am taking Colorado today.  Here’s why.  First, Colorado has won 4 straight and Cincinnati has lost 2 straight.  Second, Colorado is a better hitting and scoring team at home.  Third, Jhoulys Chacin has been solid lately.  Last, my model projects a high chance of a Colorado win with good betting value.  Bet on the Colorado Rockies on the Money Line -125.  Follow me on twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

Site Note: Tomorrow’s post will be brief and later in the day.

Bet of the Day – Colorado Rockies at San Francisco Giants, September 1, 2010

Colorado Rockies (-111) at San Francisco Giants (+101), Over/Under 6.5 runs, 9.15 ET

We won with the suddenly hot Braves yesterday.  Today we stay in the National League for the Rockies (69-62) and Giants (73-60) finale.  Not only is today the series finale, the season series is 4-4 and this is the last time they will face each other.  Six months ago this would have been a over-hyped game, but now Ubaldo Jimenez (17-5, 1.129 WHIP) and Tim Lincecum (11-9, 1.353 WHIP) have lost 5 of the last 6 games they have pitched in.  Jimenez has been phenomenal most of the year but Lincecum has only been average (He only has the third best ERA on his own team).  Will they return to their top form today?

The Rockies are 5-2 over their last 7 games with a .350 OBP averaging 5.4 runs per game (.332 OBP and 4.6 runs per game on the season).  Their bats will need to stay hot for starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez to secure a win today.  Jimenez has lost 2 0f his last 3 allowing 3 earned runs in each game.  Not terrible, but not Jimenez.  The Rockies bullpen has maintained a strong 1.271 WHIP but tends to give up key hits and home runs.

Tim Lincecum hasn’t pitched beyond the 6th inning since July 30th; 6 starts ago.  Over that stretch he allowed 22 runs over 25.3 innings.  A 7.83 ERA over that 5 game stretch.  At least on paper the Giants have been hot hitting with a .344 OBP for 6.4 runs per game over their last 7 games.  When you dig into the game lines it isn’t as convincing.  The Giants haven’t been consistent; scoring 9 runs one day to only get 4 hits the next day.  Which team will we see today?

My baseball model simulated the game Rockies 4.45 over Giants 3.62 for a total of 8.07 runs.  From the results, the Rockies hold a clear pitching advantage and a slight hitting and scoring efficiency advantage.  A major variance contributor in the model is San Francisco’s scoring efficiency.  The up and down nature makes their production an unknown.

Pitchers are like horses, they have form cycles and normally round in and out of form during a season.  Both starting pitchers have been off form of late and I don’t think they are both going to wake up at their peak today.  With the streaky hitting of the Giants, the scoring ability of the Rockies and the off form from both pitchers, today’s bet is on the run total.  At 6.5 runs, both pitchers would need to be on their game.  I don’t think that is going to happen.  Bet the Colorado Rockies/San Francisco Giants Over the 6.5 total line.

Tomorrow I will look at my first college football game.  Follow me on twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

Atlanta Braves at Colorado Rockies – August 25, 2010 3:10 ET

Today’s we are looking at an early game between the Atlanta Braves (73-53) and the Colorado Rockies (65-60).  For a few reasons, it feels like a trap game for Atlanta.  It is the end of a 6 game road trip for Atlanta (Angle #1 for Colorado).  The Braves have lost the first 2 games of the series and are now the favorite in the finale (Angle #2 for Colorado, 53.2% win rate).  The Rockies have won 3 in a row and are playing at home (Angle #3 for Colorado, 68.2% win rate).  Atlanta is the superior team on paper but can they overcome the gods of betting angle fate?

The Braves lead the NL East by 2.5 games but are only 3-4 in their last 7 games.  The Braves have continued to find ways to muster up an offense, but over the last 7 games they have given up 4.4 runs versus their 3.7 runs allowed season average.  They will need to hit today as the Rockies average 3.1 runs per game more at home than on the road (5.7 home vs. 2.6 road).  Jair Jurrjens (5-4, 1.238 WHIP) takes the mound today.  Jurrjens has pitched strong in his last 3 starts allowing 6 runs in 21.3 innings.  Will Jurrjens hot pitching be enough to slow down the home bats of Colorado?

The Rockies have won 3 straight and are 4-3 in their last 7.  Colorado didn’t bat particularly well on the recent road trip but looked to have turned it around at home.  Esmil Rogers (2-2, 1.509 WHIP) gets the start for the Rockies today.  Rogers pitched well last time out, allowing 1 run on 6 hits over 6 innings last time out.  Another step forward would make Colorado tough today.

The simulated results favor Atlanta 4.52 to Colorado 4.03.  This is less than 1 standard deviation difference.  The key driver in the model’s results is in the Atlanta hitting vs. Colorado pitching match up.  The game is likely to be determined by whether Atlanta can drive runners on base home or Rogers can limit hits given up.

Considering the 3 betting angles, the close model results, and betting value, today’s bet is with Colorado. Bet the Colorado Rockies on the Money Line for +115.  Good Luck.

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