ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS (76-58)
at COLORADO ROCKIES (72-61)
First pitch: Friday, 8:40 p.m. ET
Line: Arizona +100, Colorado -110, Total: 12.0
The Rockies will be hoping to get back on track with a win over the red-hot Diamondbacks on Friday.
The Diamondbacks are going to be heading into Friday’s game with some ridiculous confidence, as they have now won seven straight games and nine of their past 10. Arizona has swept each of its past two series, and the most recent of those two was against Los Angeles. The Dodgers have been the best team in baseball all season, so it was big for the Diamondbacks to feel like they are capable of beating anybody when they are playing their best ball. They’ll now turn around and do their best to keep burying the Rockies in the wild card standings. It once seemed like an absolute lock that Colorado would make the playoffs, but the team is only 2.5 games ahead of Milwaukee for the second spot in the NL. The Rockies need to start winning games again soon. The starters in this crucial Friday night tilt are set to be RHP Taijuan Walker (7-7, 3.55 ERA, 110 K) for Arizona and LHP Kyle Freeland (11-8, 3.81 ERA, 94 K) for Colorado. Both guys have been for their teams this season, but that is of little importance with offenses like these playing in Colorado. This one should still be high scoring, which is why the total is so high here.
The Diamondbacks are scorching hot right now and they’ll send Taijuan Walker to the hill on Friday. Walker was incredible the last time he faced Colorado, which was on Jul. 2. Walker pitched seven innings in that game and allowed only one earned run. He struck out eight batters in that one and will be hoping to turn in a similar effort here. It is, however, much harder to pitch in Colorado than anywhere else. Fortunately for Walker, he did pitch pretty well in his last trip here. That game was on May 7 and the righty gave up just one earned run in 5.2 innings of work. While he didn’t go deep into that game, Arizona would be satisfied with another outing like that one. Offensively, 1B Paul Goldschmidt has a very good chance of coming through with a big day in this one. Goldschmidt is on a tear coming into this game, as he has had two or more hits in four of the past six contests and has also hit four homers with 11 RBI in that span. Goldschmidt also hits lefties very well, so he will be looking forward to facing Freeland.
The Rockies have not been playing their best ball as of late, but they will feel good about their chances of winning this one. Freeland has been their most consistent starter this season and pitched well in his only meeting with Arizona this year. He faced them on Apr. 28 and allowed just one earned run in six innings of work. Freeland has also surprisingly pitched well in Colorado this year, as he has a 3.30 ERA when pitching at home. On offense, 3B Nolan Arenado can really help his team by doing some damage here. Arenado’s average has dropped from .312 to .305 over the past 10 games, but he is far too good of a hitter to enter a sustained slump. Expect him to snap out of it with a good performance in this one.