Pittsburgh (Niese) at Colorado (Gray) -105 O/U 10.5
The Colorado Rockies host the Pittsburgh Pirates tonight for the third game of a four-game set. The Rockies have been slumping, losers of four in a row and six of their last seven. Their struggles showed badly last night where Pittsburgh All-Star center fielder Andrew McCutchen launched three home runs in the Pirates' 9-4 victory. Pittsburgh hit five home runs in all, three of them off Colorado starter Jorge De La Rosa who departed from the game after just three innings because of an injured left groin. To no surprise, Colorado owns the worst team ERA (5.87) in baseball. Tonight, they’ll send young righty Jon Gray to the mound to try to snap a seven-game losing streak to the Pirates. The Rockies are hoping the hard-throwing, highly touted Gray can become a top-of-the-rotation arm. He’s yet to figure out Coors Field (8.42 ERA in 6 career starts) but the sample is too small to completely write him off. What we do know is Gray can miss bats with a strikeout per inning throughout his Minor League and brief MLB career. After allowing three runs in the first inning of his last start, Gray settled down and eventually records 10 strikeouts in only five innings of work against the Dodgers. I think he profiles much better in Coors Field than Jon Niese. Niese is obviously a pitch-to-contact arm at this point and has already surrendered five home runs in only 23.1 innings of work this season. And he’s been drilled hard in Coors Field with a career ERA of 7.94 including and 7 earned run disaster last year. We’ll go with Gray’s upside as the Rockies at home at a pick ‘em price.