Astros at Yankees Picks and MLB Betting Odds
by Alan Matthews - 5/1/2013
I'm really rather bummed out that the Houston Astros and Miami Marlins don't play this year in interleague play for the crown of worst team in baseball. At least the Marlins have Giancarlo Stanton (well, he's on the DL now); Houston might be the most no-name team in recent baseball history. Do you realize the Astros have not been favored in a game yet? The closest they have come was as essentially a “pick'em” for an April 24 home game against Seattle in which Houston won 10-3. The Astros have won two series all year, and the Mariners were the victim in both.
The Astros certainly won't be favored for Wednesday night's series finale at the Yankees. In fact, I don't see them having much chance of being favored until perhaps Kansas City visits Minute Maid Park from May 20-22, and that would depend on the pitching matchups.
I don't buy too many trap games in Major League Baseball, but I do believe the Yankees were caught in one in Monday's series opener against Houston. New York had been playing terrific baseball and swept Toronto in a four-game set over the weekend. So, of course, the Yanks were clobbered 9-1 on Monday as the Astros ended a nine-game road skid. New York hit into four double plays for the first time in more than two years.
Houston tagged former Astro Andy Pettitte for seven runs in 4-1/3 innings, the most runs he has allowed in a start since 2008. Someone named Carlos Corporan was the star for Houston with four hits and a career-high four RBI while someone else named Brandon Barnes had three hits and three RBI (I really have heard of this guys but am making a point). The Astros had 17 hits in the game. I'm just going to presume Houston loses on Tuesday night, but they still have a chance for a series win on Wednesday.
Astros at Yankees Betting Story Lines
The injury-ravaged Yankees have suffered another blow as third baseman Kevin Youkilis is expected to go on the disabled list. An MRI on Youkilis' ailing back was negative on Monday. However, he was to get a pain-killing injection on Tuesday, and the DL is almost a formality at this point. He has played just once in the past nine games. Youkilis is hitting .266 with two homers and seven RBI. The Yanks have been using Jayson Nix at third, but he's hitting just .217. With Derek Jeter, Curtis Granderson, Mark Teixeira and Francisco Cervelli all out, the Yankees started guys like Brennan Boesch, Lyle Overbay, Eduardo Nunez and Austin Romine on Monday. That's not even a Triple-A lineup. No wonder the Yanks managed only one run against a team with an ERA of 5.33 that is by far the worst in MLB.
Because starter Ivan Nova is also on the DL, the Yankees are bringing David Phelps in from the bullpen to start Wednesday's game. Phelps had quite an outing last time out, striking out nine Blue Jays in four innings of relief of Nova on Friday. Phelps became the first Yankees reliever ever to strike out nine or more batters while pitching no more than four innings. He had been hit around in his two most recent relief appearances. Phelps (1-1, 5.29), who started 11 games last year, has never faced Houston. Only two Astros, Chris Carter and Carlos Pena, have ever hit against him, and they have just one at-bat each.
Houston counters with lefty Erik Bedard (0-2, 7.98), who is probably close to losing his job. He has yet to pitch more than four innings this season and was gouged for five runs and eight hits in 3.0 innings of a loss in Boston last time out. His ERA away from Houston this year is 13.50, and right-handers are hitting .333 with five homers off Bedard. The problem is that Houston has no one to replace him, especially after sending fellow struggling starter Brad Peacock to the bullpen on Monday. Several Yankees have faced Bedard from his American League days. Vernon Wells, rejuvenated in the Bronx this year, is hitting .344 with a homer off him. Robinson Cano is at .250 with no homers in 16 at-bats.
Astros at Yankees MLB Betting Odds and Trends
At BetOnline, New York has been opened at -215 and Houston +200 with the total at 9.5. All trends entering Tuesday: The Astros are 15-9-2 “over/under” (8-5-1 on road) and 11-15 on the runline. The Yankees are 11-11-3 O/U (5-8-1 at home) and 13-12 on the runline.
Houston has won just 13 of its past 58 road games vs. a right-handed starter. It has won only eight of its past 33 Wednesday games. The Yankees are 4-0 in their past four against a lefty starter. They are 4-1 in Phelps' past five starts. The over is 3-0-1 in Houston's past four Game 3s of a series. The over is 3-0-1 in Bedard's past four starts. The under is 4-1 in Phelps' past five starts. The over is 2-0-2 in New York's past four against a lefty starter.
Astros at Yankees Picks and Betting Predictions
If it's a close game, that hugely favors the Yankees, and not just because Mariano Rivera is automatic in the ninth inning. Entering Tuesday, New York is 9-1 this season in games decided by two or fewer runs and 4-0 in one-run games, the only team left without a one-run loss. I think this is another one-run win because I'm not sold on Phelps even as bad as Bedard has been. Thus, I'd take the Yanks and the under, but Houston on the runline.
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