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Houston Astros vs. New York Yankees
MLB: Thursday, June 20, 2019 at 7:05 PM EST
The Astros have recently lost three in a row, but they are still in first place in the AL West with a comfortable lead in the division. They rank in the top five in MLB in team ERA and while ranking in the top 10 in runs scored, they only totaled five runs in their recent three-game skid. Houston has lost five of their last six games against the Yankees in the Big Apple.
Guess who's back, back again.
Stanton's back, tell a friend. pic.twitter.com/k7h28edLmh
— New York Yankees (@Yankees) June 18, 2019
The Yankees have recently won four in a row and they are in first place in the AL East. That has to be a big worry for the rest of the division since they have played well with several backups with some stars out. However, Giancarlo Stanton is back in the lineup, Aaron Judge will be soon, and the team recently traded for slugger Edwin Encarnacion, who went deep in his 2nd game for his new club.
Valdez looks for another solid outing
Framber Valdez (3-2 2.77 ERA) gets the nod in this series opener and he has been solid in his first two starts of the season. He started the season in the bullpen and in his first two starts he has given up three runs in 13 innings of work. In his last outing, he gave up two runs on only four hits in six innings in a 7-2 win over the Toronto Blue Jays. In Valdez’s previous start in his first start of the season, he only gave up one run in six innings but got little help in a 4-1 loss to the Baltimore Orioles.
Alex Bregman leads the Astros in HR and RBI but has been mired in a slump and is only batting .167 this month. George Springer is having a great season and after being on the DL he will be back with the club soon and Jose Altuve was also on the DL but was recently activated.
The sluggers are back
Stanton is already back and Judge will be back with the Yankees soon and last season this duo combined for 55 HR. The team traded for Encarnacion and he immediately became the team leader in HR and RBI. New York had a recent stretch where they hit a home run in 21 straight games. Gary Sanchez and Luke Volt have played well on the season and they lead the club in HR and RBI respectively.
New York has won six of their last eight games facing teams from the AL West and has won four of their last five games facing a team with a winning % above .600. They may be out for a little revenge in this game, as earlier in the season in Houston the Astros swept them in a three-game set. At the time of writing, a starting pitcher has not been named.
The New York Yankees are:
The Houston Astros are:
- 11-4 in their last 15 vs. American League East
- 5-2 in their last 7 vs. a team with a winning record
- 76-36 in their last 112 road games
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
While the Yankees are the hotter team, by far, and have a lot of pop in their lineup I am still going with the Astros in this game. Valdez has been great in his first two starts of the season and he will have another solid outing in this AL matchup. In a low scoring affair, the Astros will take the opening game of this series.
Prediction: PICK: Astros
Full-Game Total Pick
While a couple of the key head-to-head trends point to the Over in this game I am taking the Under. Valdez will keep the New York lineup in check and while a starter for the Yankees has not been named whoever it is will face a Houston lineup that has struggled in their last few games. Take the Under in this series opener in the Big Apple.
Prediction: PICK: Under