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Los Angeles Angels' Shohei Ohtani celebrates after hitting a home run in the third inning of a baseball game against the Kansas City Royals in Kansas City, Missouri on July 26, 2022. ( The Yomiuri Shimbun ) (Photo by Kaname Muto / Yomiuri / The Yomiuri Shimbun via AFP)

The Texas Rangers continue their west-coast trip as they make their way to Anaheim to open up a four-game series versus the Los Angeles Angels. Here are our Rangers-Angels picks.

Two teams struggling to find their footing in the second half of the season face off on Thursday when the Rangers visit the Angels. The division rivals are playing each other for the 10th time this season.

The Rangers hold the slight edge in the season series, with a 5-4 record versus the Halos this year. 

Here are my MLB picks and predictions for Thursday’s game between the Rangers and Angels (odds via FanDuel Sportsbook, BetMGM, and DraftKings Sportsbook; pick confidence based on a 1-to-5-star scale).

Rangers vs. Angels Game Info

Date: Thursday, July 28, 9:38 p.m. ET
Location: Angel Stadium, Anaheim, CA
Weather: 84 degrees, 0% chance of precipitation, wind NE 7 mph

Rangers vs. Angels Odds Analysis 

The Angels range as the heavy Moneyline favorites in this game from -225 at DraftKings to -236 at PointsBet

All the sportsbooks have the total set at 7.5, with the Over at -105 and Under at -115. 

Rangers vs. Angels Projected Pitchers 

Spencer Howard (1-2, 7.11 ERA, 1.78 WHIP) vs. Shohei Ohtani (9-5, 2.80 ERA, 1.00 WHIP) 

It's safe to say that based on the numbers alone, Ohtani is the better of the two starters in this matchup by a rather significant margin. Over the course of his last seven starts, Ohtani’s gone 6-1 with a stellar 1.57 ERA and 0.83 WHIP. He’s struck out 69 batters in just 49 innings pitched. In each of his last three starts, he’s recorded at least 10 strikeouts in at least six innings.

For Howard on the other hand, it’s been a different story this season. He’s struggled both as a starter and in relief. In his four starts in July, he’s recorded a 5.30 ERA and 1.77 WHIP. In his most recent start against the Oakland Athletics on July 22, he posted an abysmal 7.11 ERA in just 4 2/3 innings, allowing six hits (including two home runs), two walks, and four earned runs total. Batters have been slashing an average of .295 against him in the month of July.

Rangers vs. Angels Picks

  • Moneyline: Angels (-215 via FanDuel) ????
  • Over/Under: Over 7.5 (-105 via BetMGM) ???
  • Prop bet: Spencer Howard Under 14.5 outs recorded (+125 via DraftKings) ?????

Rangers vs. Angels ML Pick

Angels (-215)

Even with Mike Trout on the injured list and the abysmal showing by the Angels’ offense in recent weeks, it’s impossible to bet against Ohtani, especially with Howard’s struggles. 

Though the Angels have only one more win than the Rangers in their last five games, the Rangers’ offense is struggling. In four of the last five games, Texas scored four or fewer runs.

Los Angeles' weaknesses without some of its biggest stars in the lineup are well-documented, too, but having Ohtani on the mound gives the Halos a strong edge over the Rangers. 

Check out the latest comprehensive and most trusted Sportsbook Reviews by SBR.

Rangers vs. Angels O/U Pick

Over 7.5 (-105) 

This pick is a mix of an expected tough start for Howard and not-so-hot stats for the Angels’ bullpen.

Ohtani has pitched an average of just over 6 1/3 innings per game in July. That leaves around three innings for the Angels’ bullpen to close out the game. Unfortunately, closing out games has been a weakness for their relievers, to say the least.

The Angels’ bullpen’s ERA stands at 5.06 in the seventh through ninth innings, the fourth-worst mark in all of baseball. Even worse, when the Angels are winning, their seventh through ninth-inning ERA is 5.69, third worst in the league. 

If the Angels’ lineup is able to take advantage of Howard’s woes on the mound and Ohtani does Ohtani things, they should be able to win this game. It’s all a matter of the bullpen limiting the late-inning damage.

For these reasons, I’m taking the Over in this one.   

Rangers vs. Angels Prop Pick

Howard Under 14.5 Outs (+125)

Truth be told, even for a middle-of-the-rotation starter, 15 outs is a lot. Realistically, I don’t believe Howard will be in the game long enough to record 15 outs. He hasn’t pitched more than five innings in a start all year, and a 7.11 ERA does him no favors. 

Where to Bet on Rangers vs. Angels Bets

Here are our top-rated sportsbooks:

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Rangers-Angels picks from 7/28/2022 at 10:23 a.m. ET.