Verlander, Astros Will Prove too Much for Orioles

justin verlander

Willie Bee

Tuesday, April 3, 2018 12:37 PM GMT

Tuesday, Apr. 3, 2018 12:37 PM GMT

Houston Astros players get their World Series rings Tuesday night, then look to ring the Baltimore Orioles as pronounced favorites on the baseball odds.

Baltimore Orioles (1-3 SU, 0-4 O/U) at Houston Astros (4-1 SU, 2-3 O/U)Free MLB Pick: Astros -1½ (-125)Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

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Picking up right where they left off on the way to the World Series title last season, the Houston Astros have shown no signs of a championship hangover in the early going of 2018. They’ll get their rings in a pregame ceremony Tuesday night, then go out in front of the home fans and try to secure their second consecutive series win of the year in an 8:10 PM (ET) battle against the Baltimore Orioles.

Charlie Morton and the bottom of the batting order led the charge Monday when the Astros unveiled their 2017 World Series banner before posting a 6-1 decision over Baltimore. Justin Verlander takes the mound this evening for his second start of the young season, and the big right-hander is big chalk opposite Mike Wright of the Orioles. Bookmaker has Houston -245 for the contest with 9 for the scoreboard target.

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Real recognize real. @ABREG_1#AstrosHomeOpener | #NeverSettle pic.twitter.com/H2EK1b7Pvz

— Houston Astros (@astros) April 3, 2018
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Correa Might Site Due To Sore Toe

The start of what could be a long season in Charm City finds the O’s looking to snap an early 3-game skid. It has been a nice start, however, for anyone playing the MLB odds on the ‘under’ with all four of Baltimore’s games failing to reach the total thanks to the Orioles scoring a grand total of five runs to date. Wright has been up and down with the club the past few seasons and bounced between the rotation and bullpen. He made one start against the Astros in his 2015 rookie season, surrendering five runs in five frames.

Verlander tossed six shutout innings against the Rangers in Arlington on Opening Day, leaving Houston 11-1 in his starts since he joined the team in a late trade last August. He posted a 2.70 ERA (20 IP) in his final three starts with Detroit against the Orioles, but only managed to win one of the games thanks to a lack of support. The former MVP and Cy Young winner might have a little less offense and defense behind him tonight with star shortstop Carlos Correa listed as day-to-day due to a bruised foot suffered over the weekend against the Rangers.

Rivalry Trends, Umpire Notes & A Free Pick

Houston’s win on Monday was its 15th in the last 18 matchups with Baltimore, so nothing new there. The ‘under’ was a bit of an oddity, however, after seven of the previous 10 clashes went ‘over.’ Set for his first plate assignment of 2018, veteran umpire Tony Randazzo is coming off a 2017 campaign in which his games under the mask finished 13-8-2 O/U/P, both of his appearances at Minute Maid sailing well past the totals.

The roof was open Monday, but could be closed this evening with a strong chance for some rain in the Bayou City. With Baltimore’s bats slow to start the season and Verlander on the hill for Houston, a run-line play is in order for my free baseball pick.

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