The Colorado Rockies try to avoid a two-game losing streak when they face the host San Diego Padres in the first of a four-game weekend series between National League West rivals on Thursday night. The series opener is scheduled for a 10:10 p.m. ET first pitch at Petco Park in San Diego.
The Rockies have lost four of their last five games, including an 8-7 setback on Wednesday against the Los Angeles Angels. Colorado is 44-58 and in fourth place in the NL West, 14 games behind the third-place Padres and 12½ games ahead of the last-place Arizona Diamondbacks.
San Diego has dropped three of its last four contests, including a 10-4 loss to the Oakland Athletics on Wednesday. The Padres fell to 59-45 and trail the first-place San Francisco Giants by 5½ games and the second-place Los Angeles Dodgers by 3½ games.
The MLB odds for this contest have the Padres with a moneyline of -270, while the Rockies are listed at +220. The over/under for the series opener is set at eight runs.
The Rockies have won two of six games on their current 10-game road trip, which is a higher winning percentage than they’ve had as the visiting team all season. Colorado is a major league-worst 11-38 on the road.
Left-hander Kyle Freeland will be on the mound trying to improve that record on Thursday night. The 28-year-old is 1-5 with a 4.85 ERA, striking out 42 and walking 18 in 55.2 innings over 11 starts.
Freeland has two starts against San Diego this season, going 0-1 with an 8.31 ERA over 8.2 innings. Like his team, Freeland has been worse on the road, going 0-3 with a 5.10 ERA.
There have been rumors swirling about shortstop Trevor Story being traded since the offseason, but he is still with the Rockies. The shortstop is batting .260 with 19 doubles, two triples, 13 home runs, 48 RBIs and 48 runs scored while stealing 17 bases.
Outfielder Raimel Tapia is fifth in baseball with 19 stolen bases. He’s batting .285 with 22 doubles, five home runs, 43 RBIs and 48 runs scored.
Blake Snell was one of the big offseason moves for San Diego, but he’s struggled since coming to the club, going 4-4 with a 5.44 ERA. He got hit for seven runs in four innings of Wednesday’s loss to Oakland, leading some to believe the team may be in the market for another starting pitcher.
“The simple answer is: He’s got to get in the strike zone,” Padres manager Jayce Tingler of Snell after Wednesday’s loss. “He’s got to get in the strike zone early. He’s got to get in the strike zone often and start challenging guys. He’s fighting for his command.”
San Diego will have right-hander Joe Musgrove on the mound as he makes his 20th start and 21st overall appearance. The 28-year-old is 6-7 with a 3.13 ERA, striking out 123 and walking 28 in 109.1 innings of work.
Musgrove has been solid against the Rockies this season, starting twice and going 1-1 with a 0.79 ERA over 11.1 innings. He got a win in his last outing, Friday against Miami, as he went six innings and allowed two runs on six hits, including a home run, while striking out four and walking one.
Shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. continues to be the offensive leader for San Diego, ranking third in baseball with 31 home runs and eighth in RBIs with 69. He’s batting .290 with 19 doubles and 78 runs scored, which is tied for the most in the majors.
Third baseman Manny Machado had a two-game home run streak snapped on Wednesday. He’s batting .278 with 20 doubles, two triples, 18 home runs, 71 RBIs and 62 runs scored.
The division rivals have split their first 12 meetings this season, though Colorado has won five of the last six, including two of three in San Diego in their last series. San Diego has gone 34-20 as the home team.
Colorado will start Jon Gray (6-6, 3.67 ERA) on Friday, German Marquez (8-8, 3.54) on Saturday and Austin Gomber (8-5, 3.69) on Sunday. The Padres will counter with Ryan Weathers (4-2, 2.73), Yu Darvish (7-5, 3.27) and Chris Paddack (7-6, 5.13), respectively.
The MLB series prices have the Padres as the favorites at -350, while the Rockies are listed at +250.
Padres Take Opener
San Diego is looking to bounce back from a disappointing loss on Wednesday and get the series off to a good start. The fact that Colorado won two of three from them in its last visit from Petco Park will assure the Padres don’t take the Rockies lightly.
When doing your MLB picks, take San Diego to win at home.