MLB Picks: Angels vs. Astros Betting Preview

Joe Freda

Friday, June 28, 2013 3:15 PM GMT

Friday, Jun. 28, 2013 3:15 PM GMT

Los Angeles’ Jerome Williams (5-3, 3.36 ERA) is slated to face Houston’s Bud Norris (5-7, 3.60 ERA), matching up a pair of right-handed starters. 

Friday’s MLB betting has the Los Angeles Angels opening a weekend road set with the Houston Astros, who notched an improbable four-game sweep in Anaheim, earlier this month. 

Angels start trip with sweep 

Los Angeles began its road trip with a three-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers, collecting at plus prices in each affair. Thursday’s finale saw the Angels notch a 3-1 win in 10 frames, with Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton driving in go-ahead and insurance runs. 

Houston held on for a 4-3 victory in Wednesday’s battle with the St. Louis Cardinals, picking up a split in the first two contests of its homestand. Astros outfielder Brandon Barnes capped off a rally in the fourth inning, driving in mate Brett Wallace to erase an early 3-0 deficit. 

Williams shelled at home 

Williams allowed two homers in six frames as part of Saturday’s 6-1 defeat for Los Angeles to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Hawaii native gave up four earned runs, failing to cash as a 128 home favorite. 

Angels outfielder Mike Trout logged his side’s sole run, while Alberto Callaspo and J.B. Shuck united to hit 4-for-7. Los Angeles’ Mark Trumbo struck out twice in a 0-for-4 night, leaving three men on base from the cleanup spot. 

Norris goes six in Chicago 

Norris notched a no-decision on the same night of action, cashing as a 127 road dog against the Chicago Cubs. The 28-year-old allowed two earned runs over six innings, while Houston came away with a 4-3 triumph. 

Astros relievers Jose Cisnero and Jose Veras combined to give up two hits over the matchup’s final three frames, picking up their staff’s win and save, respectively. Houston’s J.D. Martinez cracked a three-run homer to tie the battle, while Ronny Cedeno pulled off a ninth-inning squeeze.

Back the UNDER in Houston 

Norris opened as a 120 home dog at William Hill, while the shop first set the ‘total’ at a flat nine. Angels outfielder Peter Bourjos (.331 BA) is listed as “questionable” to return from a thumb injury, missing the team’s last three games. 

I am backing the UNDER for my baseball picks in this duel, looking for another tight battle between these starters. Williams and Norris met earlier this month in Anaheim, with UNDER bettors cashing in a 2-0 victory for Houston. 

Norris has held his own against some of the Angels’ key bats, including a stingy 3-for-17 combined mark for Howie Kendrick and Josh Hamilton. The UNDER is 5-1 in Norris’ last six starts as a home dog, while the wager has cashed at 8-2 in Houston’s last 10 contests that came after a victory. 

Williams is in a spot to settle down here, with Houston’s lineup hitting just .216 against right-handed pitching at home. The Angels have had this set circled for revenge and look to keep their winning streak going, which should give Williams some added fuel on the hill. 

Los Angeles has seen the UNDER collect at 5-1 in Williams’ last six road outings, with another low-octane affair looming here. Look for both squads to play an intense opener, manufacturing the scoring in a close contest to start the series. 

MLB Pick: UNDER 9 at William Hill

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