San Francisco (Cain) at Boston (Pomeranz) -210 O/U 10
Drew Pomeranz, in theory, is supposed to help the Red Sox win a World Series when October rolls around. But I’m not convinced in the slightest that Pomeranz success in San Diego will translate over to Fenway Park.
Pomeranz was a highly coveted prospect coming out of Ole Miss, and the Indians drafted him with their #5 overall pick back in 2010. Cleveland was willing to dump him by 2011, trading him to Colorado. The Rockies gave him every chance to succeed, then traded him to Oakland. The A’s gave him two years, then dealt him to San Diego. Now the Padres have been willing to let him go as well, despite his All Star first half.
When we put Pomeranz’s 8-7 record and 2.47 ERA pitching for a last place team under the microscope, we can see all kinds of vulnerability. The #1 factor due for regression is his home run to fly ball percentage. The MLB average is 12.8%. Pomeranz has made 12 of his 17 starts in the VERY pitcher friendly ballparks in California; hence his 8.8% of home runs to fly balls.
That’s not going to last at Fenway. The fly balls to left field get caught at the warning track in the dead air at Petco, Dodger Stadium and AT&T Park in San Fran. At Fenway, those same fly balls hit at the same velocity smack the Green Monster or fly over it! Oftentimes, when a promising young lefty makes his first trip around a new league, he’ll have an edge over opposing lineups. But that won’t be the case for Pomeranz today – the Giants have seen him twice already this year. I’m not convinced that his Red Sox debut is going to go well.
Matt Cain is even more of a ‘bet-against’ pitcher than Pomeranz right now. He threw a rehab start at single A San Jose on Friday following a month long stint on the DL with a hamstring injury. It wasn’t pretty: nine runs allowed in just four innings of work. His quote: “I got my work in. I got a lot of work in, in a short period of time.”
Cain was an ace earlier in his career, and the Giants have him locked up with a pricey long term contract. But the numbers don’t lie. Over the last three years, he’s 5-16 with a 4.97 ERA and a 4.86 FIP; a well below average hurler. That’s bad news against the single most productive lineup in baseball this year. Expect fireworks.