Houston Astros vs Texas Rangers Predictions, Odds, Picks

  • Former Cy Young winner on the mound for Houston
  • Both offenses look to get going
  • X-factors to watch

Houston Astros vs Texas Rangers Odds

Houston Astros vs Texas Rangers Tuesday, April 28, 2:05 p.m. EST
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Texas Rangers
Houston Astros
Money Line
+150 -170
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Texas Rangers
Houston Astros
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Houston Astros vs Texas Rangers

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Houston Astros vs Texas Rangers Prediction and Picks

Since opening the season 4-1, Houston hasn’t been the team many thought it would be going 5-8 over the past 13 games. But the Astros are at their best when their ace, Justin Verlander is on the mound. It’s supposed to be a warm 85 degrees in Arlington on Thursday so the ball could fly for an Astros team looking to get their bats going.

Picks:

Houston to cover the spread

Over 8

Garcia’s 2021 record: (7-6)

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Trends to Watch

  • Astros are 5-1 in their last 6 road games vs. a left-handed starter
  • Astros are 20-7 in their last 27 Thursday games
  • Astros are 5-2 in their last 7 games vs. a left-handed starter
  • Astros are 9-4 in their last 13 games as a favorite
  • Under is 4-0 in Astros last 4 Thursday games
  • Under is 5-1 in Astros last 6 overall
  • Under is 7-2 in Astros last 9 road games
  • Astros are 5-2 in the last 7 meetings in Texas
  • Rangers are 5-1 in their last 6 games as an underdog
  • Rangers are 6-18 in their last 24 games vs. a starter with a WHIP less than 1.15
  • Under is 4-0 in Rangers last 4 overall
  • Under is 4-1 in Rangers last 5 games as an underdog

Pitching Advantage Goes to Houston

He didn’t pitch all of 2021 and made just a handful of starts in 2020 before undergoing Tommy John surgery, but still, Justin Verlander doesn’t look as if he’s missed a beat to begin the 2022 season.

Verlander has played three prolific offenses so far – the Angels, Mariners and BLue Jays – yet he’s given up just four runs in 19 innings. He allowed one run in five innings in his debut, before throwing eight shutout innings in a win over Seattle and giving up three runs in six innings against Toronto.

Two of his three outings have been quality starts and he continues to limit baserunners, ranking second in the league in WHIP (0.74) and 12th in ERA (1.69). Verlander has a 5:1 strikeout to walk ratio and just about the only way he gets beat is the long ball – he’s given up three solo shots on the season.

Martin Perez for the Rangers was fantastic his last time out after two mediocre starts to open the season. In his first two appearances he gave up three runs in four innings both times, picking up a loss in each. But last week, he shut down the Athletics, throwing six shutout innings while giving up just two hits.

On the season, Perez is 0-2 with a 3.86 ERA and 1.36 WHIP.

Both Offenses Trying to Get Going

After losing five of six contests, Houston has put back-to-back wins together against the Rangers. But even with those victories, a few questions remain about the offense.

The Astros got just six and seven hits respectively in the past two games, but were able to get the timely ones – a three-run double by Kyle Tucker on Wednesday and a two-run shot by Tucker on Tuesday – to get the wins.

All players not named Tucker have combined to drive in just three runs the past two games.

Texas, meanwhile, is looking to get its big bats going. The Rangers spent half-a-billion dollars to add middle infielders Corey Seager and Marcus Semien and so far the two have combined to do almost nothing.

Seager is hitting .243 and with only two extra-base hits on the season leading to just a .589 OPS. Somehow, Semien has struggled even more, hitting just .167 so far this season with no home runs and a .457 OPS. If those two don’t get going, the Rangers season is done before it begins.

X-factors to Watch

For the Astros, the x-factor is going to be a right-handed hitter against the southpaw perez. That rules out some of the biggest and best hitters in the lineup, like Michael Brantley, Yordan Alvarez and Kyle Tucker. Insead, we will look at the young shortstop Jeremy Pena.

Pena replaced Carlos Correa, a tough ask to begin with but despite a relatively quiet last week where he went 2-for-21 – although one of those hits was a huge two-run walkoff home run against the Blue Jays – he’s been pretty decent this season. Look for him to get going again against a southpaw.

For Texas, we’re going to look at those people who have extra pop in their bat, because if you’re going to beat Verlander it has to be with the long ball. That’s going to be first baseman Nathaniel Lowe.

Lowe is hitting .400 this year against right-handed pitchers with a .455 OBP. He has one home run and nine RBIs on the season with an .878 OPS.

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How to Watch Houston Astros vs Texas Rangers

Houston Astros vs Texas Rangers Information
Teams Houston Astros vs Texas Rangers
Location Globe Life Field, Arlington, Texas
Time Tuesday, April 28, 2:05 p.m. EST
How to watch Bally Sports Southwest, AT&T Sportsnet Southwest

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Tony Garcia

Expert on Baseball

Tony writes about baseball for WSN.com after recently graduating with his Masters from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Prior to that, Tony was a local sports reporter for MLive Media Group, based out of Jackson, Michigan where he covered everything from high school to professional sports. He graduated from Michigan State in 2015 with a degree in journalism. During his time there he covered the Michigan State football and men’s basketball teams from 2013-15 and hosted a sports radio show on WDBM 89FM.

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