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Rockies vs. Diamondbacks MLB Odds & Picks: Why Colorado Has Value at Arizona (Thursday, April 29)

Rockies vs. Diamondbacks MLB Odds & Picks: Why Colorado Has Value at Arizona (Thursday, April 29) article feature image

Daniel Shirey/Getty Images. Pictured: Charlie Blackmon (left) and CJ Cron (right).

  • The Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks will take the field in Phoenix on Thursday night.
  • The Diamondbacks have really struggled when coming off of big losses, but will that happen against a struggling Rockies team?
  • Michael Arinze breaks Thursday night's game down below.

Rockies vs. Diamondbacks Odds

Rockies Odds +135
Diamondbacks Odds -159
Over/Under 9 (-103 / -120)
Time 9:40 p.m. ET
Odds as of Thursday morning and via DraftKings.

The Colorado Rockies head to Arizona to take on the Diamondbacks in a four-game series. Colorado will probably be happy to face any opponent that’s not the Giants after allowing 24 runs to them in their last series.

The good news is the Rockies finally won an away game in the series. The bad news is they’re still just 1-8 on the road this season.

But perhaps their luck will change against a Diamondbacks team they have had some success against on the road over the last few years.

Colorado will send Antonio Senzatela to the mound in the series opener, and Luke Weaver will oppose him for Arizona. The Diamondbacks are as high as a -164 favorite in this game, but is that price justified?

Let’s break it all down with a deep dive into this matchup.

Colorado Rockies

If we’re comparing the head-to-head numbers of both pitchers, you’d probably have to give the edge to Antonio Senzatela. In 96 plate appearances, Arizona’s lineup has a .264 AVG / .333 OBP / .402 SLG slash against him. Its .138 ISO would also be considered slightly below average.

However, the Rockies’ right-hander is off to a poor start this season as he’s also been vulnerable to giving up the long ball. Senzatela’s HR/FB rate of 21.1% would be the highest in his five-year career. He’s particularly struggled with runners in scoring position, as batters are hitting .364 against him with a .393 wOBA and .455 SLG.

Compare that to last season, when batters hit only .193 against him and had a .236 wOBA with runners in scoring position. It doesn’t seem that it’s just a run of bad luck for Senzatela because the hitters’ .364 BABIP is also the same as their average.

That means that simply pitching to contact isn’t working for him. Opponents are putting good swings on everything he’s throwing at the plate.

That’s why I’m a bit hesitant about Senzatela turning things around soon. While his 5.17 FIP is slightly lower than his 5.76 ERA, that slight positive regression won’t be enough to move the needle for me.

It could be lights-out for Senzatela if Diamondbacks get runners in scoring position against him. Keep in mind that they’re tied for the league lead in home runs (10) in this spot.

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Arizona Diamondbacks

A trip to Arizona has been a good thing for the Rockies in recent years. Since the 2018 season, they’re 14-11 for +6.36 units at Chase Field. Colorado’s familiarity with Weaver is also something it can benefit from in this matchup.

Through 78 plate appearances, the Rockies lineup is hitting .324 against him with a .401 wOBA and .270 ISO. Five of their 24 hits against Weaver have left the park as home runs. And this season, the Arizona right-hander has been susceptible to the long ball, as he’s allowed five home runs in just 21 2/3 innings of work.

Weaver’s 2.08 HR/9 ratio would be the highest of his career, and his 5.16 FIP — which is higher than his 4.57 ERA — suggests that further regression could be in his future.

In 80 career appearances, Weaver has a win-loss record of 21-31. He’s not particularly a power pitcher, and his GB/FB ratio is just 1.10. When batters have made contact against his pitches, it hasn’t worked out well for him by the looks of things. Hitters have a lifetime .322 BAPIP against him in 371 innings.

This year, when they’ve been able to make contact with great impact — FanGraphs categorizes 50% of their batted balls against him as hard contact — as the average exit velocity on his pitches is 94.1 mph, the highest of his career.

None of this bodes well for Weaver down the road.

I wouldn’t be surprised if we revisit his numbers later in the season and find they were somewhere in line with last season when he finished just 1-9 in 12 starts.

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Rockies-Diamondbacks Pick

The easiest thing to do would be to fade the Rockies in this game considering they’re just 1-8 on the road. However, both starting pitchers are flawed, and the Diamondbacks are overvalued in the -155 to -165 range.

If there’s an away ballpark where the Rockies can turn things around, it’s Chase Field, a place they’ve won 56% of their last 25 meetings against the Diamondbacks.

Both teams allowed their share of runs in their previous outing coming into this game. Colorado lost, 7-3, to the Giants, while Arizona got walloped by San Diego, 12-3.

Normally, you’d be looking to back a team to bounce back after such a loss, but Arizona shouldn’t be at the top of your list.

The Diamondbacks are 22-42 for a loss of 19.24 units coming off a loss of nine or more runs.

In comparison, the Rockies are 7-5 (+5.1 units) when they play Arizona in the first game of a series after allowing seven or more runs in their previous outing. In fact, they’ve won their last six games in this situational spot.

If I had to pick between these two sides, I would lean toward the Rockies, but these are extenuating circumstances they’re having with just one road win this season.

As a result, this is a spot in which I’m more comfortable being an observer on the sidelines with the hope of identifying something in this game that could help me later on in the season.

Pick: Lean Rockies ML +135

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