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Both of these teams have been hot in the second half of the season, but Houston will have a significant advantage on the mound tonight in Framber Valdez. As good as the Rangers' offense has been, they will run into a wall tonight against the AL Cy Young candidate. Expect the Astros to take advantage of Andrews Heaney’s struggles tonight, further cutting into the Rangers' lead in the AL West.
The Rangers have done a fantastic job holding off the red-hot Astros in the AL West. They broke out of their slump and kicked off the second half of the season by sweeping the Guardians and Rays. While the offense has continued to impress, they will face a great pitcher in Valdez tonight. The Astro’s ace has been incredible at home this season, which will challenge this Rangers lineup. Look for them to struggle to score runs, leading to a lopsided loss with Andrew Heaney on the mound for Texas tonight.
Heaney (6-6, 4.58 ERA) is not having a good season. The back-end starter was fantastic for the Dodgers in 2022, but he returned to his old bad habits in 2023. The lefty doesn’t miss many bats and has not lasted six innings since May 27. While Heaney did well against the Astros on July 2, that was before this Houston team got hot. Their offense is firing on all cylinders and will be in store for payback against the Rangers starter tonight.
The Rangers are not short on hitters but are without their best in Corey Seager. The star shortstop has been one of the best hitters in baseball in 2023 but landed in the IL with a thumb injury. That will hurt the Rangers even more tonight, as Seager has hit Valdez well in the past. None of their other stars have had that success, signaling a quiet night for the Texas offense.
The Astros have not had the season they hoped for, but things have turned around in July. Despite losing Yordan Alvarez to an injury, they closed the gap on the Rangers in the AL West. Houston has been as good as Texas over the last few weeks, and we see them having the edge today. The pitching matchup is too overwhelming to ignore, as is this new and improved Hoston offense. Look for the Astros to put up a considerable number against Texas today, leading to a lopsided win.
Houston’s Framber Valdez is having a rough July, but most of those struggles have come on the road. The All-Star owns a 2.13 ERA across 11 home starts this season. He has five straight quality starts at Minute Maid Park, going at least seven innings in all but one of them. Valdez allowed one earned run across six innings against the Rangers back in April, and we see him topping that tonight. With Seager out of the lineup, we don’t think Texas will be able to do enough against the lefty to keep up with the Astros' improved offense.
Speaking of the Astros' offense, they have been led by Kyle Tucker since losing Alvarez. The 26-year-old has been electric and now ranks eighth in the league in batting average and eleventh in RBIs and OPS. Tucker has been especially great against lefties, posting a .353 batting average against them in 2023. Add that to the recent hot streak of Alex Bregman, and you can see why they are winning so many games. Look for them to jump on Heaney early tonight en route to a win.
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Michael is an avid sports fan and a veteran bettor from Milwaukee. He learned the trade from his grandfather in Las Vegas as a kid and has turned that into a successful career. He cheers for all Wisconsin pro teams along with his Alma Mater Arizona State. He specializes in baseball betting, but has experience in football, basketball, and hockey as well. When he isn’t pouring over stats, he’s spending time with his two young children.More info on Michael Savio
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