After today, just one more contest for these AL West rivals before the All-Star break. This is the middle matchup of this series and like Friday night, Houston’s a decisive favorite.
The Los Angeles Angels might only be in fourth place in their division, but they deserve a lot of credit as a group. This past week their teammate, Tyler Skaggs, passed away at 27 years old. The shock and horror of that was overwhelming. Last night was supposed to be Skaggs next start and everyone was completely aware of that. If any team needed the All-Star break it’s the team in the red and white.
After going through a seven-game losing streak, Houston has regrouped and gotten their focus back in winning seven of 10 and is back to playing like the Astros have most of the season. This could be a take off point for Houston, as George Springer and Jose Altuve are back on manager A.J. Hinch’s lineup card and Carlos Correa is expected back this month.
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Tonight’s confrontation is one of three on FOX Saturday evening and the MLB odds have the Astros as -215 opening line home favorites. Houston has the best home record in the American League at 31-14 (+4.60 units). which is second only to the L.A. Dodgers in baseball.
Gerrit Cole (8-5, 3.28 ERA) is the anticipated starter for the Astros. Houston has won 12 of Cole’s 18 starts, including six of seven. Cole had a bad start on May 22nd against the White Sox (5 innings, 6 runs allowed), but since then, the right-hander has thrown 44 innings, permitting just 32 hits, striking out 65 and seen his ERA tumble from 4.02 to present level. Cole figures to be tough on the Halos at home.