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 Orioles Hanser Alberto and Jonathan Villar celebrate during the Orioles win May 25 in Denver (David Zalubowski)
Orioles Hanser Alberto and Jonathan Villar celebrate during the Orioles win May 25 in Denver (David Zalubowski)|Associated Press
MLB

MLB Monday: Frank on Rockies v Diamondbacks, Cubs v Astros, Orioles v Tigers, Marlins v Nationals, Greinke, Hamels, Scherzer, Urena

Greg Frank

Greg Frank

Favorite Pick of the Day
Rockies (-1.5) over Diamondbacks (+165)

Underdog Pick of the Day
Cubs (+166) over Astros

Under the Radar
Orioles (-105) over Tigers

Total of the Day
Marlins-Nationals First 5 Under 4.5

The Skinny
The Diamondbacks have been one of the biggest surprises in baseball in the first two months of the season, sitting at 28-25 and a distant second in the NL West behind the Dodgers in what looked to be a rebuilding year. Yes, that’s only three games over .500, but for a team that was projected to win in the low 70s, it’s a nice start. Their bats woke up in a big way over the weekend in a sweep of the Giants to the tune of 34 runs in three games. Much like our fade of the Padres Sunday, we’re expecting regression from an offense that has overachieved in the season’s first two months. Also, Zach Greinke goes to the mound today for Arizona and his ERA on the road is 4.04 compared to 1.75 in the desert. I’ll take a swing on the Rockies run line for better value . . . Speaking of value, the Cubs are a +166 pup in a Cole Hamels start? Sign me up. Chicago is 8-2 in Hamels’ 10 starts and his numbers are better all across the board so far this season than Gerrit Cole, his counterpart here ...The Orioles just competed pretty well in Denver and for most teams that’s not enough but we’re talking about a team that is probably headed for 100 losses. Had it not been for a ninth-inning collapse at Coors Field Sunday, Baltimore wins two out of three against the Rockies. Now they come back home to face the putrid Tigers and our guess is if their compete level stays high that will result in a win Monday . . . Max Scherzer is starting to look like Max Scherzer again which means a first five innings total of 4.5 should be bet under faster than I can tell you to bet it. After allowing 18 earned runs in his first six starts, Scherzer has allowed just nine runs in his last five starts. Miami’s Jose Urena is for the most part a pedestrian starter, but has been more than that against the Nationals. Washington’s hitters have compiled a slash line of .214/.307/.375 against Urena in 112 total at-bats. That’s a big enough sample size for me to expect no more than three runs in the first five innings of this game and at 4.5 I have a bit of a cushion on that assumption.