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Texas Rangers vs. Houston Astros
Where and when: Minute Maid Park, Houston, Texas, Saturday, 7:10 pm EST
Game-two of a three-game AL West set between the Texas Rangers and the Houston Astros will take place at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas, on Saturday night at 7:10 pm EST. The Astros wrapped up a four-game set at Globe Life Park just days ago by winning games three and four for the series tie.
Furthermore, Houston came to life after being in danger of having a sub-par, eight-game road trip. After falling to the in the first two games of a four-game series versus the Los Angeles Angels, the Astros were able to crank up the offense in posting a total of seventeen runs in the final two games to salvage the series.
Pitching also did its part during this time in allowing just four runs as opposed to allowing fifteen runs in games-two and three. Both the lineup along with the rotation for the Astros are ranked in the top ten of teams within the MLB. Furthermore, Houston has lost just fourteen games at home all season while winning a total of thirty-three times.
And while Houston has shined at Minute Maid Park, they will face a team in the Rangers that are six games below .500 on the road this year. In fact, they have dropped four of their last five outings away from Globe Life Park. Furthermore, their offense has really seemed to stall during this time while its pitching staff, which ranks 35th in the MLB in ERA (5.08), have given up a total of forty runs in their last four games.
Despite Texas winning six of ten games in Arlington versus Houston, they dropped a four-game set at Minute Maid Park earlier in the season as their pitching surrendered twenty-six runs in the final two games, thus eliminating the possibility of a tie after going down 0-2.
Jurado pulls the start for Rangers in game-two
Ariel Jurado (5-5) has certainly had some rough outings for the Rangers recently, to say the least. In fact, some of his roughest starts have come at home where he allowed four, six, along with another five earned in his most recent start versus the Astros as the right-hander went just four frames in a 12-4 defeat. For the year, Jurado has gone winless in three appearances versus the Astros, the other two being in relief status in early May to where he pitched slightly over three innings, total, while allowing four runs on five hits.
Back in the lineup & back on the mic. pic.twitter.com/A4VTyuE1ME
— Texas Rangers (@Rangers) July 16, 2019
Due to his shakiness on the hill, Jurado’s ERA has increased to 4.63 on the year. He possessed a 5.93 ERA in 2018 after going 5-5 while pitching a tad over fifty-two innings for the Rangers. Furthermore, after pitching three-straight quality starts most recently, the second-year pitcher has only gone an average of 3.3 innings in his last two starts. Alex Bregman has a homer along with four RBI’s versus Jurado in six at bats. Jose Altuve is batting .500 in just four at bats.
No pitcher assigned for Houston
No pitcher has been assigned for the Houston Astros at this time. However, as stated, the staff certainly stepped up immensely in the final two games of a four-game set versus the Angels. Most importantly, they were able to get it done after stinking up the hill the two straight losses to Los Angeles to where pitching allowed sixteen runs, as stated. Nonetheless, Houston’s pitching remains of the best in the league behind two double-digit wins from Gerrit Cole (10) along with Justin Verlander (11). Also, Wade Miley is approaching this feat with eight wins alongside just four losses in addition to a modest 3.21 ERA on the year.
Time to split back to Houston. pic.twitter.com/II5Q4VL6OP
— Houston Astros (@astros) July 19, 2019
In all, the Astros have had to deal with a season-ending injury to Lance McCullers due to an elbow injury. On the other hand, Brad Peacock (6-6)is expected to be back in the rotation after being out with a shoulder injury.
- HOU is 37-15 in their last 52 Sat. games.
- HOU is 46-20 in their last 66 home games.
- HOU is 11-5 in their last 16 overall
- TEX is 2-6 in the last 8 meetings.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Even with no pitcher assigned, I will back the Houston Astros in game-two of this set on Saturday on the strength of Houston having tons of success versus the Rangers at Minute Maid Park. Also, the big hitters for the Astros’ lineup have had some success versus what has been a struggling Jurado, which signals yet another loss to Houston for the Rangers.
Prediction: Pick: Houston Astros
Full-Game Total Pick
Again, Jurado has followed up great performances with horrible outings as of late. However, he has allowed only eight hits in his last two road games versus the Minnesota Twins along with the Detroit Tigers. Of course, one can expect the Astros pitching staff to keep pressure on a struggling offense for Texas, thus signaling the under as being the strong play.
Prediction: Pick: Under