Neither the Washington Nationals nor Colorado Rockies have anything to play for but pride as they open a series Monday in Denver. Which way to lean at BMR’s top-rated books?
Washington Nationals vs. Colorado Rockies
Monday, September 27, 2021 – 08:40 PM EDT at Coors Field
Hard to believe this is the final Monday of the 2021 regular season! Just five games on the slate, and being honest this one is meaningless – but sometimes, the easiest money can be made on meaningless games. Could be that both Nationals manager Dave Martinez and Rockies manager Bud Black are in their last week of employment.
This is Colorado’s last home series of the year, and the Rox play like potential World Series contenders at Coors Field much of the time but are an ugly 25-52 on the road. Washington is just bad everywhere as it “battles” the Miami Marlins to avoid a last-place finish in the NL East.
Colorado won two of three in D.C. from Sept. 17-19. Brendan Rodgers was 6-for-13 in the series with two homers and three RBIs. Trevor Story (more on him below) was 4-for-13 with a homer and double. The Rockies hit .248 as a team with five homers. Nats star Juan Soto (more on him below) was 3-for-9 in the series with a solo homer.
Nationals Probable Pitcher: Josiah Gray
If the Nationals were contending for a playoff spot, 22-year-old Juan Soto might win NL MVP (he will get votes but not win it). If you asked all 30 GMs if they had to start a franchise today and which player they would take first, Soto would definitely get some votes because of his age and the fact he’s under team control through 2024.
Soto is tied with the Dodgers’ Trea Turner for the MLB batting lead at .322 and has 29 homers, 92 RBIs, and an OPS of 1.023. Since the All-Star break, his on-base percentage is an absurd .547. That’s the sixth-best in MLB history for any player post-All-Star break. Soto’s 98 career homers are fourth-most in MLB history for anyone prior to their 23rd birthday behind Mel Ott (115), Eddie Mathews (112), and Tony Conigliaro (104).
“I played with a guy that was pretty impressive in his day, and that was Barry [Bonds],” Manager Dave Martinez said recently. “If he keeps going the way he’s going, if you compare anybody to Barry, it would be Juan right now.”
It’s young pitcher Josiah Gray (1-2, 5.92) on the mound here – he was acquired in the Turner and Max Scherzer trade to the Dodgers at the end of July. Gray is coming off his first big-league win, allowing two runs over six last Wednesday in Miami.
This will be his first time pitching in the thin air at Coors Field but he did face the Rockies in D.C. on Sept. 17, allowing five runs over 5.1 innings in a no-decision. Brendan Rodgers is 2-for-4 off him with a homer. Washington is 1-7 on the MLB odds in its past eight series openers and 1-5 in its past six Monday games.
Rockies Probable Pitcher: German Marquez
This will be the last home series as a member of the Rockies for All-Star shortstop Trevor Story (.245, 23 HRs, 73 RBIs), who will go down as one of the best players in franchise history. Huge surprise the team didn’t trade him by the July 30 Trade Deadline as Story isn’t going to re-sign in free agency. Colorado doesn’t spend big money like that these days and is rebuilding.
The New York Yankees have long been linked with him. Brendan Rodgers will almost surely be Colorado’s shortstop going forward and the former touted prospect is having a nice breakout year.
The Rox enter on a four-game losing streak, which has essentially ended any chance they had at finishing third in the NL West. It’s right-hander German Marquez (12-10, 4.32) on the mound Monday. He wasn’t all that sharp last time out, allowing five runs over six innings of a no-decision vs. the Dodgers. Marquez pitched in Washington on Sept. 17 and allowed six runs over four innings in a no-decision.
Marquez is 8-2 with a 3.49 ERA (98.0 IP, 38 ER) in 17 games started at home this year. He has pitched four times in his career overall vs. the Nats spanning 22 innings and has a 3-1 record despite an ugly 7.77 ERA. Colorado is 24-9 on the MLB odds in its past 33 as a favorite.
MLB Pick: Rockies -158 with BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.