New York +135 at Houston (Keuchel) O/U 7
Recommendation: New York
Each of these starting pitchers have been throwing well for an extended period now which figures to make it tough on each lineup tonight. The Yankees have struggled far more offensively than Houston has since the All-Star break being held to three runs or less in seven of their 10 games while the Astros have scored four or more in six of their nine. Houston also has been rolling for two months now going 37-16 since May 24 while New York to their credit has faced a tough 10 games to start the second half and come away with a 6-4 mark which keeps them in the AL Wild Card hunt. Shipping closer Aroldis Chapman is far from a waiving of the white flag by the Yankees who still possess one of the best bridge to closer duos in MLB. The matchup of Michael Pineda’s power pitching (56 Ks L 40.1 IP) versus Houston’s strikeout prone lineup (897 is MLB’s 3rd most) favors New York. Pineda has also shown solid control over his last 12 outings walking only 16 batters in the 67.2 inning span. His mound opponent in this one, Dallas Keuchel has a 2.84 ERA and 1.29 WHIP over his last five starts which can’t be ignored but his K/BB numbers during the 31 inning stretch are a pedestrian 23/11. Believe the New York lineup has a greater chance of breaking through in this game and with relievers Betances & Miller getting yesterday off, the late innings bullpen edge goes to them as well. Houston will have prize rookie and #1 ranked MLB prospect Alex Bregman in the lineup batting sixth tonight but facing Pineda is a tough first assignment. Underdog price here is large enough to entice a play on the Yankees who have the ingredients to get the win here.