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August 19, 2016

There is one underdog pick tonight.

Take Colorado Rockies (+133) on the ML against Chicago Cubs risking 3% to win 3.99%.
(Anderson and Hendricks must start for wager to have action)

There is certainly no question that the Chicago Cubs are one of the favorites to win the World Series this season and given the way that they have been playing it is easy to see why. Chicago is 14-2 in the month of August and have managed to sweep 4 straight teams. They are playing incredibly well at the moment and have been one of the betting favorites of the general public nearly all season long. That being said, tonight they find themselves in an interesting spot and one that we believe is set up to bury the betting public.

The Colorado Rockies are one of the most explosive offensive teams in the league and Coors Field is one of the most daunting places for opposing pitchers to play in. Charlie Blackmon and DJ LeMahieu have been on fire for the Rockies as of late. Blackmon is in the midst of a 12 game hitting streak during which he is batting .481 with five doubles, one triple, nine homers and 15 RBIs. He has a 1.111 slugging percentage and a 1.637 OPS and has raised his average 23 points to .322 during this streak. Prior to his streak ending on Wednesday, LeMahieu had hits in eight straight at bats and reached base in 10 consecutive plate appearances. He has hit safely in 14 of 16 games this month, batting .483 with two doubles, one triple, three homers, nine RBIs. He has a .483 on-base percentage and a 1.281 OPS. During the month of Aug, he has raised his average 23 points to .343, one point behind National League leader Daniel Murphy of Washington. With these two batting first and second in the lineup, it allows the Rockies to do a lot of damage and put runs up on the board in a hurry when they get production from the meat of their order.

There is no question that Kyle Hendricks has been spectacular for the Cubs this season, however he has had his issues with this Rockies' lineup in the past. In fact, Colorado is the team that handed Hendricks his first loss of the season. In 4 career starts, Hendricks has a somewhat unimpressive 5.02 ERA. He has also been somewhat suspect on the road this season going just 3-6 with a 3.43 ERA. The Rockies bats managed to destroy an elite pitcher in Stephen Strasburg in their last matchup, hitting the “Phenom” for 9 earned runs before he could finish off the second inning. With the Rockies having not only seen Hendricks this season, but also having success against him, we expect their offense to have the advantage in this contest. 

Tyler Anderson will get the start for the Rockies and will be looking to rebound after being ejected by home plate umpire Eric Cooper for hitting Philadelphia's Maikel Franco in his last start. Anderson has been Colorado's best pitcher this season and his 3.42 ERA is the best in franchise history in a player’s first 12 starts. Anderson will also likely have an advantage on the mound in this contest with the Cubs lineup having yet to see the youngster. Prior to his ejection in his last start, Anderson had lasted 6 or more innings in 8 straight starts which could prove to be important in this contest as it will keep Colorado’s' less-than reliable bullpen on the sidelines. We expect Anderson to go deep into this contest and keep the Cubs lineup off balance in the process.

Over their past 13 games, the Chicago Cubs have (not surprisingly) been the betting favorite in each and every contest. Not only have they been the favorite, but they have been considerable favorites in each with the average odds listed on the Cubs being -206 during that span. To now see the Cubs listed as only -150 favorites, especially with Kyle Hendricks on the mound should immediately cause pause for concern. The oddsmakers have severely reduced the odds on the Cubs for this particular matchup and we believe that is a huge indication on how they feel this game is going to play out. If Anderson has a quality showing in this matchup and can contain the Cubs offense, we believe the Colorado bats will do enough damage late to come away with the victory and bury the betting public in the process.

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