The Cincinnati Reds will host the Colorado Rockies in the first game of a three-game series beginning on Thursday. These teams split a four-game series at Coors Field when they met from May 13-16.
The Reds lost a day game to Milwaukee 7-2 on Thursday and are now 29-31, fourth in a competitive NL Central division. The Colorado Rockies are fourth in the NL West with a 25-37 record. The Rockies were scheduled to face the Miami Marlins on Thursday night, but that game was not complete at the time of this preview.
Freeland hopes to get Rockies going on the roadColorado simply has not been able to win on the road this season, where they are just 5-23. The .179 road winning percentage is currently on pace to be the fifth-worst road mark of all-time. The Rockies are 16th in MLB, averaging 4.3 runs per game this season, and eighth with a .243 team batting average, but are dead last in baseball, averaging just 2.5 runs per game, and a .200 batting average on the road. Ryan McMahon leads the team with 13 home runs and is tied for the team lead with Charlie Blackmon with 33 RBI this season overall. McMahon has just five home runs and 14 RBI in away games, and Blackmon has just 10 RBI outside of Coors Field.
Our skipper 💯💯💯— Colorado Rockies (@Rockies) June 10, 2021
Tonight, Bud Black became the 3rd Rockies Manager to win 300 games! pic.twitter.com/elNfosozgt
The Rockies pitching staff is 27th with a 5.16 road ERA. Kyle Freeland, a 6'4 left-hander, will start for the Rockies on Friday. In three starts this season, Freeland is 0-1 with a 6.23 ERA. Last Saturday, Freeland allowed 10 hits and five runs in five innings of the Rockies 6-3 home loss to the Oakland A's.
Reds lighting up the scoreboard in OhioThe Reds will start Tyler Mahle on Friday, who is 5-2 with a 3.32 ERA and 1.12 WHIP on the season in 12 starts. While Mahle has been impressive overall, he does have an elevated 7.23 ERA in four home starts, due to allowing six earned runs in five innings against the Cubs on May 2 and seven runs to the Giants in two innings on May 20. Mahle will hope to bring some of his recent road success home with him for this start. Mahle has only allowed two total runs over his last 17 1/3 innings over his last three games, which were road starts against the Cardinals, Cubs, and Nationals.
Employee No. 19 reporting for duty. pic.twitter.com/8fSWxS8kcY— Cincinnati Reds (@Reds) June 10, 2021
Supporting Mahle will be a Reds offense averaging 4.9 runs per game overall, fourth in baseball, but a league-best 5.9 runs per game at home. Leading the way for the Reds is a powerful lineup led by Nick Castellanos (.355 AVG 12 HR 33 RBI), Tyler Naquin .259 AVG 11 HR 38 RBI), and Jesse Winker (.346 17 HR 37 RBI). Castellanos and Winker are the No. 1 & 2 MLB leaders in batting average.
- Rockies are 13-38 in their last 51 road games
- Rockies are 4-12 in their last 16 Friday games
- Reds are 7-1 in the last 8 games started by Tyler Mahle
- Reds are 14-4 in their last 18 Friday games
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
Games aren't played on paper, but this an obvious call for me. The Reds offense is the best in baseball in their home ballpark, and the Rockies have been historically bad on the road. Colorado will have to perform a lot better than their league-worst average of 2.5 runs per game to stay in this game, facing a Reds team that scores an MLB best 5.9 runs at home. That Reds offense should make plenty of contact in this game, facing Kyle Freeland, who has only recorded two strikeouts over his last nine innings pitched. Take Cincinnati.
Full-Game Total Pick
The Reds are MLB's best offensive home team, while the Rockies are the worst offensive road team. I do, however, think the Rockies are in a good spot to score some runs here. Cincinnati's projected starter Tyler Mahle has a 7.23 home ERA this season, well above his 1.65 road ERA. Kyle Freeland, who is scheduled to start for the Rockies, has a 6.23 ERA in three starts and is yet to pitch more than five innings in a start yet this season. This means the Reds should get plenty of opportunities against the Colorado bullpen, which is the fourth-worst in baseball with a 5.16 road ERA. I love the over here.