The St. Louis Cardinals are hoping to hold onto first place in the NL East as they begin a three-game series against the Colorado Rockies on Friday night. The Cards are heavily favored on Friday night with a moneyline of -220 compared to Colorado’s moneyline of +180. The game also has an over/under of 7.5 runs.
St. Louis has lost back-to-back games to the Mets to split a four game-series after rattling off six straight wins. That winning streak allowed them to overtake the struggling Brewers atop the NL Central. Of course, the preseason favorites in the NL Central now have to hold onto that lead with three teams within 2.5 games.
Meanwhile, the Rockies remain last in the NL West despite winning two of three games against the Giants this week. For what it’s worth, the Rockies have won three of their last five series. However, they are still the only team in the National League with a winning percentage under .400.
Return of the Gomber
Lefty Austin Gomber will start for Colorado on Friday. He spent the first two years of his career in St. Louis and pitched well in limited action last summer. However, he was one of the players who went to Colorado as part of the Nolan Arenado trade.
Gomber’s seventh start of the season will come against his former team. With a 5.90 ERA over six starters, the lefty hasn’t gotten off to a good start with his new team. In fairness, it’s just one bad start that has caused his ERA to explode. In three of his six starts, Gomber has pitched at least six innings and allowed two runs or less.
Meanwhile, Gomber’s former teammates have scored four runs or less in four of their last five games. However, Arenado, Paul Goldschmidt, and Tommy Edman are all batting over .300 over the past week. Tyler O’Neill is also swinging a hot bat, giving the middle of the St. Louis order plenty of oomph.
The Jack Attack
The Cardinals will send ace Jack Flaherty to the mound on Friday. Still just 25, he’s been business as usual for Flaherty, who is 5-0 with a 3.41 ERA over his first six starts of 2021. In half of his six starts, Flaherty has allowed one run or less while pitching at least six innings.
On the other hand, the Rockies are starting to come alive offensively after a sluggish start. Since the calendar flipped to May, Colorado has scored 36 runs in five games. Of course, they now have to take their act on the road.
Over the last week, Raimel Tapia, C.J. Cron, and Trevor Story are all batting over .400. Charlie Blackmon is also starting to hit a little more after a disastrous April. However, the Rockies still lack in the power department, which is unusual for them.
Don’t Doubt Jack
It’s tempting to take the Rockies in this game because there is some value in that pick. But Flaherty is good enough to contain the Colorado lineup, especially with the Cardinals at home. Bet on St. Louis to hold serve at home and beat the Rockies on Friday.
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