The Colorado Rockies are very well positioned to capture a home win against the San Diego Padres on Monday. The Padres management is making a big mistake by giving Edinson Volquez to ball to start at Coors Field. Volquez has been absolutely awful there this season, owning a 14.04 ERA and yielding 20 hits in just 8 1/3 innings pitched over two starts. Not surprisingly, current Colorado hitters have a combined .330 batting average lifetime (in 112 plate appearances) against Volquez.
Rockies pitcher Jhoulys Chacin paints a much more favourable statistical picture in this one. Chacin has been a steady performer recently, throwing six straight quality starts (six innings-plus pitched; three runs or fewer allowed). Moreover, he’s shown great resiliency at Coors Field – a stadium known to be hard on pitchers. He’s thrown a quality start in four of his last five home appearances. He also owns strong track records against a number of Padres hitters. Will Venable (.125 batting average), Chase Headley (.167), Nick Hundley (.100) and Yonder Alonso (.143) are a few of the San Diego regulars who have struggled versus Chacin. As a result, the Rockies (1.53) are the right choice in this contest.
Unlikely ace Bruce Chen will power the Royals to a victory in Kansas City against the Miami Marlins. The veteran began the season in the bullpen but entered the rotation on 12 July and has been nearly unstoppable since then. He’s delivered quality starts in all five contests he’s started and registered a 1.14 ERA in that stretch. Chen will be backed by a team that entered August with a lot of confidence. They had their best month to date (winning percentage-wise) in July and started this month winning six of their first eight games. At home they’ve been particularly solid.
The Marlins – a team that has the National League’s worst record – have been particularly bad on the road. The club’s winning percentage away from Miami is hovering around .300 and they’ll be pretty worn out by the time they play this game: this contest will be the seventh of a nine-game road swing. Miami starter Tom Koehler has been okay this year (3-7 with a 4.40 ERA), but don’t expect him to step up against a successful Royals team. In games against teams with winning percentages over .500 (like the Royals), Koehler is 0-6 with a 5.36 ERA in 2013. Pick the Royals to win at 1.51.