Will we have a race in the AL West Division this season? That answer could partly come this week when the second-place Oakland Athletics play a series at first-place Houston. The Astros currently have a 6.5-game lead and are favored on Monday’s MLB Lines to make it 7.5.
How to Bet Athletics vs Astros MLB Lines & Game Info
- When: Monday, 8:10 PM ET
- Where: Minute Maid Park
- Probable pitchers (away/home): Homer Bailey/Gerrit Cole
- TV: MLB Extra Innings
- Live Stream: MLB.tv
- Radio: Sports 610
- MLB Lines: Houston Astros -250 (Total 9)
Why Bet on Oakland?
Oakland had a chance to take three of four over the weekend at the AL Central-leading Minnesota Twins but blew a ninth-inning lead and lost 7-6 on Sunday. Liam Hendriks surrendered two runs on three hits in a blown save. Hendriks was tasked with preserving a one-run cushion and suffered only his second blown save of the season. He gave up a one-out single to Luis Arraez before serving up a game-tying RBI triple to Ehire Adrianza. He struck out ensuing batter Jason Castro before giving up a walk-off RBI single to Max Kepler. It was the first time that he’s been scored upon since June 5. The 30-year-old reliever is now 4-1 with eight saves along with a 1.46 ERA, 1.05 WHIP and 70/18 K/BB ratio across 55 1/3 innings of work this season.
The A’s have not lost back-to-back games since they were swept in the day/night doubleheader at Texas on June 8. Oakland is 18-8 in games in which the opponent starts a left-handed pitcher compared to 39-35 against right-handers. The A’s are batting .270 with a .824 OPS against left-handed pitchers compared to .244 with a .757 OPS against a right-hander. They have the third-best OPS and fourth-best batting average against lefties in the American League and the fifth-lowest batting average against righties. Oakland has the second-most home runs off lefties in the AL (49).
It’s new addition Homer Bailey on the mound here. Bailey (8-6) allowed two earned runs on seven hits and no walks while striking out six across six innings to earn the win Wednesday against the Mariners. Bailey turned in a strong start in his Athletics debut, allowing no home runs while also surrendering no free passes. His only real trouble came in a second inning when he allowed both of his earned runs, though he conceded only two hits in his remaining four innings of work. Bailey generated 24 combined swinging and called strikes, a strong tally for 87 total pitches.
The right-hander returns to his home state of Texas for a matchup with the Astros, whom he’s 4-0 against with a 1.46 ERA in eight career starts.
Why Bet on Houston?
The Astros have won an AL-best five straight games. They finished a sweep of the visiting Texas Rangers on Sunday, 5-3. Michael Brantley went 3-for-3 with a pair of home runs and three RBIs. Brantley set the tone with a towering two-run blast off Rangers starter Lance Lynn in the opening frame. He also singled in the third, walked in the fifth and slugged a solo homer off reliever Chris Martin in the eight. It was his second multi-homer effort of the season. The 32-year-old veteran outfielder has gone deep three times in his last four games and is on pace to easily eclipse his previous career-high mark of 20 homers, which he established back in 2014 with the Indians. He’s hitting .332/.391/.530 with 55 runs scored, 15 home runs and 55 RBIs.
Jose Altuve went 2-for-4 with a solo homer in the Astros’ win Sunday. The 29-year-old second baseman has been one of the hottest hitters in the game, posting six multi-hit efforts in 10 games since the All-Star break. He owns a .277/.333/.492 triple-slash line with 40 runs scored, 35 RBI and three stolen bases in 285 plate appearances.
Roberto Osuna allowed one run in the ninth inning but managed to hang on for his 22nd save of the season. Osuna was summoned to protect a three-run lead in the ninth inning and managed to work around a solo homer by Logan Forsythe to slam the door on the Rangers. The 24-year-old owns a 2.38 ERA, 0.89 WHIP and 45/8 K/BB ratio in 42 appearances.
It’s Cy Young candidate Gerrit Cole on the mound here. Cole (10-5) earned the win Wednesday after recording 11 strikeouts and limiting the Angels to one run on seven hits and a walk over seven innings. Cole delivered yet another dominant performance, this time blanking the Angels until the fifth inning when he allowed a solo home run to Dustin Garneau. Otherwise, the 28-year-old scattered six singles while whiffing 11 batters. Cole is now 6-0 in his last 10 starts and owns a 3.12 ERA, 1.03 WHIP and 194:33 K: BB on the season. Cole leads the Majors with 194 strikeouts and 13.47 strikeouts per nine innings.
The Astros’ 36-14 home record this season is the best in the AL and puts them on pace for their best home record in franchise history, currently held by the 1980 and 1998 Astros, who went 55-26 (.679) at home in the Astrodome.
Athletics vs Astros MLB Betting Trends
- Athletics are 0-4 in the last 4 meetings in Houston
- Astros are 5-1 in Cole’s last 6 starts vs. a team with a winning record
- Athletics are 11-4 SU in their last 15 games on the road
- The total has gone UNDER in 13 of Oakland’s last 20 games played in July
- Astros are 5-0 SU in their last 5 games at home
- The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Houston’s last 6 games against an opponent in the American League
Expert Final Score Prediction for Athletics vs Astros
Oakland Athletics 3 – Houston Astros 6