By Greg Dempson
The Rangers send Yu Darvish to the mound in this 2:10 Eastern Time start. Darvish has been limited to the amount of pitches per game since his return from Tommy John surgery.
He is averaging 5.5 innings per game in seven starts with he/Team at 2–5 in those seven contests. In his most recent three outings he has pitched a combined 18.3 innings allowing 17 hits, (5 of which were homers,) while walking 2 with 29 strikeouts. Darvish and the team are 0–3 in his last three games. The Rangers, who are .500 on the road, don’t have a great bullpen as their ERA away from home is 4.15, WHIP 1.418 while allowing 24 home runs.
Houston counters with Joe Musgrove. This will be his first career start. He got a taste of big league action this past Tuesday vs. the Blue Jays as he pitched 4.3 scoreless innings and struck out 8 batters in long relief. Houston possesses the much better bullpen of the two teams as their home ERA is 2.44, Whip 0.908. In 202.7 innings of relief, Houston’s bullpen has allowed only 150 hits, (16 homers,) while walking 34 vs. 243 strikeouts.
· My last offering was only an opinion, it was on the over at 8.5 runs on Friday night’s game between the Angels and Mariners. The score was 6–3 after one inning of play. That frosted my corn flakes! My last official play last Wednesday lost and I still sit at 29–14–01 with my Every Edge selections.
Around the Diamonds
· In his career, Darvish is -25.60-units against the money line vs. an AL team with a team batting average of .255 or worse.
· Houston is 28–12 and +16.50-units against the money line after batting .225 or worse during a 15 game span the last two seasons.
· Home plate umpire Will Little is 8–2 to the host team in his last 10 behind home plate.
All Systems Go
· Play on all American League underdogs with a money line of +100 or higher that hit .265 or lower when playing against a team with a below average bullpen whose ERA is 4.50 or higher, a team that’s batting .225 or worse in their last 15 games. This system is 30–16 = 65% the past five seasons.
· In the month of August, play on home teams winning between 51% to 54% of their games when the money line is + or – 125 and they’re playing a winning team. This system is 51–26 = 66% the past five seasons.
Rangers vs Astros Pick
My Sunday afternoon selection is an opinion only on the Houston Astros at +105.