Best MLB playoffs player prop bets for today, 10/19: Justin Verlander comes to play

Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander (35) wears a Space City themed uniform while delivering a pitch during the game against the Oakland Athletics at Minute Maid Park.
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Pickswise was nice enough to give me the opportunity to write up my plays for you all. For those of you who don’t know me, they refer to me as JutPicks on Twitter. I post all my plays with brief write-ups every day. Now I get to write even more with no character limit!

I pride myself on being as transparent as they come. My MLB record from last season and this season is listed in my bio. In the regular season, I recorded 253 wins and 164 losses for a gain of +36 units. Without further ado, let’s dive into my favorite plays for Wednesday’s slate!

Lock in our MLB picks for today’s Yankees vs Astros Game 1 and Phillies vs Padres Game 2!

Justin Verlander 5+ Ks/Astros team total over 2.5 runs (-120)

Line available at DraftKings Sportsbook at time of publishing.

The Houston Astros made quick work of the Seattle Mariners in the ALDS. It took them all of 18 innings in Game 3 to sweep the series. It was no secret that future Cy Young winner Justin Verlander struggled in Game 1. He allowed 6 runs in 4 innings and the Astros’ loaded offense was still able to escape with a victory. Tonight, Verlander will get the pleasure of facing off against the New York Yankees. It took all 5 games for the Yankees to take down the young Guardians. This will be the 3rd time in 6 years these storied franchises have met in the ALCS and we’re in line for another masterful series.

Jameson Taillon will get the ball for the Yankees. Taillon made a relief appearance in Game 2 of the ALDS. He failed to record an out and allowed 2 earned runs on 3 hits. It’s going to get much tougher for the right-hander against the Astros. Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez and Kyle Tucker are a combined 11 for 26 in their career against Taillon with 3 home runs. The Astros have scored at least 3 runs in 12 of 18 games in the last month and I trust this offense against Taillon, who has allowed at least 2 earned runs in 8 of his last 10 starts.

Verlander should have no problem bouncing back after his Game 1 meltdown. He’s recorded at least 5 strikeouts in 22 of 28 starts, including 12 of 15 at home. He has a rich history in terms of strikeouts against Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton and Gleyber Torres. This game reads similar to Shane Bieber’s performance in Game 2 of the ALDS. Bieber recorded 7 strikeouts in 5.2 innings.

Be sure to check out our full New York Yankees vs Houston Astros predictions

Houston Astros -0.5 first 5 innings (-120)

Line available at BetMGM Sports at time of publishing.

These two plays do correlate but to get this line at -120 with one of the biggest pitching advantages we’ve seen all postseason long is too good to pass up. Both of these offenses are 2nd and 3rd in runs per the first five innings and 1st and 3rd in opponents’ runs per the first 5 innings.

Verlander and his dominant home ERA is one that I feel confident backing. He allowed fewer than 2 earned runs in 8 of his last 10 starts at Minute Maid Park. In his only matchup against the Yankees this season, Verlander went 7 innings and allowed only 1 run, which came in the 7th inning.

Taillon may not have the longest leash tonight, but the Yankees need to get at least 4 innings from the 30-year-old. Their bullpen is as dominant as they come so backing the Astros through the first 5 innings is something I prefer over the Astros -1.5 spread.

Lock in our Yankees vs Astros Same Game Parlay (+575 odds!)

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