MLB Picks: Tigers vs. Astros Odds & Preview

Joe Freda

Thursday, May 2, 2013 12:50 PM GMT

Thursday, May. 2, 2013 12:50 PM GMT

The Detroit Tigers went 6-2 in last week’s eight-game home stand, outscoring their opposition by a combined margin of 47-30.

Thursday’s MLB betting has Jim Leyland’s club heading south for its opener with the Houston Astros, who return to Minute Maid Park after a 1-6 stretch on the road.

Detroit’s Rick Porcello is listed to square off with Houston’s Jordan Lyles in a duel of right-handed hurlers. Porcello comes in with a 1-2 mark over his four outings (8.84 ERA), while Lyles makes his first start of the year.

Porcello, Tigers edge out Braves

Porcello picked up his first win in Saturday’s 7-4 victory for Detroit over the Atlanta Braves. The 24-year-old lasted 6 1/3 innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits.

Tigers relievers Drew Smyly and Joaquin Benoit both logged holds, despite Benoit giving up a homer to Atlanta’s Justin Upton. Detroit’s Jose Valverde earned his second save, closing the battle with two strikeouts in the final frame.

The contest’s combined 11 runs jumped above the ‘total’ of eight, lifting the OVER to 4-0 in Porcello’s four starts. Detroit’s Omar Infante notched three RBIs, drilling a pair of doubles as part of a 3-for-4 day.

Lyles called up from OKC

Lyles began the season with the Oklahoma City RedHawks, Houston’s Triple-A club from the Pacific Coast League. The South Carolina native went 1-2 over five starts, recording the first win in Saturday’s 11-1 home victory for the Redhawks against the New Orleans Zephyrs.

Lyles started 25 games for Houston last year, compiling a 5-12 record with a 5.09 ERA. Three of the span’s outings came against American League lineups, allowing nine earned runs over 15 1/3 IP.

Be sure to check the Willie Bee's series closing pick between the Braves and Nationals.

[gameodds]3/225948/43-999997-192/us[/gameodds]

Back the OVER in Houston

Sports books were slow to post odds due to Houston’s pitching change. The clubs have not met since a 2009 series, with Houston going 2-1 at home.

I am adding the OVER in this duel to my night of sports picks, looking for both lineups to pile in their share of runs.

Porcello has had his share of struggling in road starts, giving up 16 runs over three outings. The latest affair saw the New Jersey native surrender nine runs to the Los Angeles Angels, lasting less than one inning on the hill.

Houston’s Carlos Pena and Ronny Cedeno have had success against Porcello’s arm, cracking one homer each in a combined 18 at-bat’s. Cedeno also has a double in his 3-for-7 lifetime mark.

Lyles has had some inconsistency for Oklahoma City, called up despite a 5.32 ERA in his stint with the RedHawks. Facing Detroit’s lineup will be a hefty step up in class, with the Tigers hitting .275 against right-handed pitching, with a .339 OBP. Tigers sluggers Prince Fielder and Omar Infante have united with a 3-for-7 career mark against Lyles, including one homer for Fielder.

The OVER has cashed at 6-2-1 in Houston’s last nine home dates, while the same wager is 5-2 in the Tigers’ last seven matchups against righty starters. Look for the OVER to collect again here.

Free Pick: OVER at Bet 365 

Don't forget to check out my sensational pick for tonight's game futuring the Boston Red Sox vs. Toronto Blue Jays!
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