MLB Betting: Zimmermann to inspire Nationals in Philadelphia

Philadelphia Phillies vs Washington Nationals

Playing at home will not be enough for the Philadelphia Phillies Wednesday when they host the Washington Nationals.

The Phillies have been a solid home team this year (they were 35-31 coming into this series there), but there are a few factors that cut against a win for them in this contest.

The first is they’ve just been such a struggling team as of late. While they finished the first half, 48-48, they’ve crumbled after the All Star break, posting a 15-27 record. The second big problem is Roy Halladay is on the pitcher’s mound for Philadelphia. The former two-time Cy Young Award winner is a shell of his former self.

He’s spent most of the year on the disabled list and, while he looked good in his first return start (two runs allowed on four hits in six innings against the Arizona Diamondbacks), I fear his most recent outing (five innings, seven hits and five runs allowed versus the Chicago Cubs) is more indicative of what he’s got left in the gas tank.

Furthering the Phillies woes is the fact they must face Jordan Zimmermann. The Nationals’ starter had a horrific July (1-3 with a 7.18 ERA), but bounced back nicely in August to post a 3-2 record and a 3.86 ERA. Most recently, he’s thrown back-to-back quality starts (six innings or more pitched; three runs or less allowed).  A renewed Zimmermann and an over-the-hill Halladay has me picking the Nationals at 1.68.

Colorado Rockies vs Los Angeles Dodgers

An uneven pitching match-up in Denver should help the Colorado Rockies upset the Los Angeles Dodgers.

It’s been a really rough year for Dodgers’ starter Edinson Volquez. He’s put up a 5.97 ERA and was released by the San Diego Padres earlier in the season. The opportunity to start at Coors Field will not solve his problems. Lifetime, Volquez is 1-4 with an 8.39 ERA there.

Overall, Rockies hitters have a robust lifetime batting average of .341 (with a .511 slugging percentage) in 162 career plate appearances against Volquez. In contrast, Colorado’s Jorge De La Rosa has been an ace in the normally pitcher adverse Denver stadium. In 13 starts there this season, he has a 9-1 record with a 2.74 ERA at home. In his one previous outing against the Dodgers in Colorado, De La Rosa got the win going seven innings, while allowing just six hits and two runs. Choose the Rockies at 1.78.

Best bets

Back the Nationals to beat the Phillies at 1.68.

Back the Rockies to beat the Dodgers at 1.78.