- Texas Rangers vs Houston Astros predictions
Texas Rangers vs Houston Astros predictions
Pickswise's Expert Predictions & Analysis
Run Line Pick
The Texas Rangers have lost 10 games in a row and find themselves 24 games out of first place in the AL West. With the trade deadline approaching, slugger Joey Gallo seems the most likely to be dealt and without Gallo the Rangers offense would be one of the worst in the league. Another player on the trade block is starting pitcher Kyle Gibson who will take the mound for his 19th start of the season and has been the ace for Texas with a 2.86 ERA with a 1.13 WHIP. Although these stats sound really good, he has actually been having some very poor starts recently as he has allowed 13 runs in his last 11.1 innings. However, this isn’t too surprising because his xERA is 3.57 which means some poor starts were inevitable. This will be his fourth time facing Houston this season and although he has had three quality starts against them this season, the Astros offense is too good to expect them to be limited for a fourth time.
Framber Valdez had an incredible start this season. It took him until his fifth start to allow more than one earned run, but teams have started to learn how to hit Valdez. The lefty starts the hitter with his sinker or changeup and then utilizes his wipeout curveball once he’s ahead in the count. This works incredibly well for Valdez, but only if the hitter allows Valdez to get ahead. Opponents have a .314 and .348 batting average against his sinker and changeup compared to a .095 average against his curveball, so if he can get the Texas hitters to go deep into counts then Valdez should have a solid outing. The Astros offense looked back to normal on Friday as they scored 7 runs on 8 hits, so back Houston by the -1.5 run line.
Game Totals Pick
Since the all-star break, these offenses have been struggling. These teams rank 29th and 30th in on-base percentage in the second half of the season, but that’s not all for the Rangers as they also rank last in batting average, slugging percentage, and OPS. The Rangers have scored more than 3 runs only once and have been shut out 3 times in the 8 games since the all-star break. These two pitchers are very capable of keeping this game low scoring and keeping the offenses at bay with solid performances, so back the under 8 in Houston.
* Under 8 line playable at time of publishing. Playable at that number *