Very interesting but also somewhat puzzling trade late on Monday night as Colorado sent franchise icon and shortstop Troy Tulowitzki along with veteran reliever LaTroy Hawkins to Toronto for shortstop Jose Reyes and three young pitchers. Now, is Tulowitzki a better player than Reyes? He is, but the Blue Jays already had the best offense in the majors and badly need to add a starting pitcher. Obviously, this doesn't help there. Plus, Tulowitzki, 30, is still owed $113.7 million through 2020, and his numbers no doubt have been inflated some playing half his games at Coors Field. Still, that Toronto offense is just scary good now. I have no idea why the Rockies would even want the injury-prone 32-year-old Reyes unless they are planning to flip him. He's still owed another $48 million after this season. Toronto is now +1200 to win the AL pennant. This deal means nothing for Colorado this season. It's full-on rebuild now.
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Rockies at Cubs (-245, TBA)
This will have live betting at sportsbooks as the matinee is televised on the MLB Network. Presumably Reyes debuts here if he doesn't on Tuesday. The Mets already have said they aren't interested in a trade to bring him back. By the way, I fully expect the Rockies to trade outfielder Carlos Gonzalez now. He has been raking this month. Colorado starts young right-hander Eddie Butler (3-6, 4.77) here. He returned to the majors and had a quality start last time out, allowing three runs over six innings against the Reds. He has never faced the Cubs. Chicago lefty Jon Lester (5-8, 3.32) pitched well last time out, allowing just two runs over seven innings against the Phillies, but got a no-decision. He has a 1.53 ERA this month. Gonzalez is 1-for-6 off Lester with a strikeout.
Key trends: The Rockies are 0-5 in Butler's past five vs. teams with a winning record. The Cubs are 0-4 in Lester's past four at home. The "over/under" has gone under in six of his past seven pitching on four days of rest.
Early lean: Bet against the Rockies for at least the rest of this week. The players on that team aren't happy Tulo was dealt. Plus, now some other guys are looking over their shoulders.
Phillies at Blue Jays (-226, 9.5)
Tulowitzki is batting .300 with 12 home runs and 53 RBIs over 87 games in 2015. If he doesn't make it to Toronto to debut on Tuesday, he should here. Over the past nine seasons, Tulowitzki ranks first as a shortstop in OPS (.893), home runs (186), RBIs (650), and wins above replacement (40.0). He's also a better defender than Reyes is. He would face Phillies starter Jerome Williams (3-7, 6.28), who has been one of the worst in the majors. Williams did have a quality start last time out, but it was his first since May 26. Toronto's Josh Donaldson is 7-for-23 with three doubles off him. Tulo is 1-for-3 with two RBIs. It's R.A. Dickey (4-10, 4.53) for Toronto. His numbers don't look great, but Dickey has surrendered three earned runs or fewer in all but one of his previous 10 starts. Carlos Ruiz is 6-for-19 with a double off him.
Key trends: The Phillies are 1-7 in Williams' past eight on the road. The Jays are 1-5 in Dickey's past six. The over is 5-2 in Dickey's past seven on Wednesday.
Early lean: Blue Jays and over. I'll be going over many Blue Jays games going forward.
Nationals at Marlins (-103, 7.5)
Tuesday was set to be a big day for Washington as first baseman Ryan Zimmerman and outfielder Jayson Werth were both set to be activated off the disabled list. The Nats were looking at possibly trading for Tyler Clippard of the A's to bolster their bullpen -- Clippard was with Washington last season -- but he was sent to the Mets on Monday. Washington will do something in the bullpen. Aroldis Chapman? Doug Fister (3-6, 4.50) goes here for the Nats. They have lost his past four. Fister hasn't faced the Marlins in 2015. Dee Gordon is 1-for-3 off him. Miami was set to activate the All-Star second baseman off the DL as well on Tuesday. It's Tom Koehler (8-6, 3.16) for the Marlins. He hasn't allowed more than two runs in any of his past six starts. Koehler is 1-1 with a 3.38 ERA in two starts this year vs. Washington. Werth is 4-for-13 with two homers off him. Zimmerman is 5-for-14 with a dinger.
Key trends: The Nats are 1-5 in Fister's past six on the road. The Marlins are 0-6 in Koehler's past six on Wednesday. The under is 5-2 in Fister's past seven vs. teams with a losing record. The over is 4-1 in Koehler's past five vs. Washington.
Early lean: Marlins and under.
Padres at Mets (-115, 7)
Quite possibly the final start for Tyson Ross in a Padres uniform as reports are the Cubs are in heavy talks to land Ross -- possibly in a package where Chicago would send shortstop Starlin Castro to San Diego. Ross (6-8, 3.45) isn't an ace but a good No. 3-type starter. Guy hasn't allowed a homer in his past 16 starts, which is a franchise record. Ross hasn't faced the Mets this season. Curtis Granderson is 4-for-10 with a homer off him. New York's Bartolo Colon (9-9, 4.60) hasn't won since June 12. He deserved a win last time out, however, allowing just a run and five hits over eight innings against the Dodgers. It's his first start of the year vs. San Diego. Melvin Upton is a career .303 hitter off him with a homer.
Key trends: The Padres are 2-6 in Ross' past eight vs. teams with a winning record. The Mets are 6-1 in Colon's past seven vs. teams with a losing record. The under is 8-0 in Ross' past eight on Wednesday. The under is 5-1 in Colon's past six.
Early lean: Padres and under.
Angels at Astros (-103, 8)
This also will have live betting with it the ESPN Wednesday night game. The Halos made a minor trade for outfield depth on Monday in landing Shane Victorino from Boston. Angels left fielders have been about the worst in the majors offensively this season, so maybe Victorino helps. And he has been good in his postseason career. Garrett Richards (10-7, 3.25) is on the mound for Los Angeles. Richards is 1-1 with a 3.09 ERA in two starts this year vs. Houston. Jose Altuve is a career .320 hitter off him. It's rookie right-hander Lance McCullers (4-3, 2.60) for the Astros. He pitched in Anaheim on June 25 and allowed a run and four hits over six innings.
Key trends: The Angels are 9-2 in Richards' past 11 on five days of rest. Houston is 4-0 in McCullers' past four at home. The over is 5-1 in Richards' past six on the road. The under is 5-0 in Richards' past five vs. Houston.
Early lean: Angels and under.
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