MetroBet takes a look at the two NLDS games for Thursday.
Two of the National League’s top slugging teams collide in Miller Park on Thursday afternoon (5:07 p.m., FS1) as the Colorado Rockies visit the Milwaukee Brewers for Game 1 of the NLDS. Milwaukee was second only to the Dodgers in home runs in the regular season (218), while Colorado was third (210). The Brewers are -140 favorites, while the Rockies are available at +125. The betting total is 8.5 runs.
Antonio Senzatela (6-6, 4.38 ERA) is expected to start for Colorado, with Milwaukee manager Craig Counsell opting for the “bullpen game” strategy. Brandon Woodruff (3-0, 3.61 ERA) will be the so-called “opener.” Milwaukee is armed with Josh Hader, Jeremy Jeffress and Corey Knebel for the late innings of this one. Rockies skipper Bud Black will probably turn to his bullpen early as well. Colorado relievers pitched 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball in Wrigley Field in their Wild Card win on Tuesday night.
The Rockies ended their season on a tear, winning eight of their last 10 games while piling up 67 runs. Trevor Story is the hottest hitter in the lineup, as he clubbed 10 home runs in September and tallied three hits in Tuesday’s Wild Card win over the Cubs. The Brewers have been hot, and so has Christian Yelich, but Colorado is worth betting as the underdog in this toss-up.
Prediction: Rockies win, 4-3
The play: Rockies +125
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Atlanta Braves at Los Angeles Dodgers
The Dodgers are heavily-favored in their NLDS opener (8:37 p.m., MLBN) against the Braves with Hyun-Jin Ryu (7-3, 1.97 ERA) on the Dodger Stadium mound. Los Angeles is -170 against Atlanta’s Mike Foltynewicz (13-10, 2.85 ERA), while the Braves can be had at +160. The betting total is 7.0.
The oft-injured Ryu made just 15 starts this year but has pitched lights-out, posting a WHIP just over 1.000. He has not made a start against Atlanta this year, but the Braves are a disheartening 21-26 against lefty starters in 2018. However, Freddie Freeman is 4-for-6 lifetime against Ryu, while Charlie Culberson and Adam Duvall are a combined 6-for-15 with a home run against him.
Foltynewicz has struggled against the Dodgers in the past, as he’s 1-1 with a 5.56 ERA and 1.50 WHIP in two career starts. Manny Machado has owned Foltynewicz over his career, recording four hits in six ABs. And Yasmani Grandal has two homers in six ABs against Atlanta’s ace. Don’t be surprised if L.A. gets into Atlanta’s subpar bullpen (4.17 ERA) early. The Dodgers’ significantly better relief core (3.73 ERA), led by Kenley Jansen and Pedro Baez, should make the difference late.
Prediction: Dodgers win, 6-5
The play: Over 7.0 runs (-110)
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