Astros vs Angels

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Tonight the 26-16 Astros open up against the 24-16 Angels in their second series of the season. The Angels took the last one 2-1 in Houston, and while this one is in Anaheim, the Astros will have more favorable pitching match ups this time around.

The Astros will not be facing Shohei Ohtani this time, at least as a pitcher, but offensively Ohtani has been just as scary. In 74 plate appearances, Ohtani is batting .348/.392/.652 for 5 homers and the second highest wRC+ in the AL at 181. Otherwise, the Angels offense is led by early season MVP favorite Mike Trout (193 wRC+), defensive superstar Andrelton Simmons (149 wRC+), who is having an breakout season at the plate, and veterans Justin Upton (115 wRC+), Zack Cozart (104 wRC+), and Albert Pujols (92 wRC+).

The Vegas Perspective may have just taken on a heightened importance, as today some serious sports betting legalization passed. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the federal ban on state-sanctioned betting was unconstitutional in a 7-2 decision, opening the door for individual states to legalize sports betting at their discretion.

It’s unclear when Texas would follow suit, if ever, but regardless of what happens, the world of sports betting is about to become a much bigger part of everyday sports coverage, and we’ll continue try to stay ahead of the curve.
We usually don’t find edges on the Astros, because typically, the public loves to hammer up the lines for top teams, but McCuller’s presents an exception, as his advanced stats and projections rank him as a much better pitcher than his traditional numbers would indicate.
The Astros head to LA after taking two-of-three from the Texas Rangers. They claimed a 6-1 win on Sunday behind a strong start from Dallas Keuchel at long last. The 2015 Cy Young winner laid down the law with seven scoreless innings and eight strikeouts, while Evan Gattis and Carlos Correa both went deep to keep the scoreboard ticking over.

The Angels salvaged a split from a four-game series against the Twins with a 2-1 win last night. A brilliant outing from Shohei Ohtani kept the Twins quiet enough for the Angels to sneak by. The Japanese rookie struck out 11 in 6.1 innings and allowed just five baserunners before handing the game over to the bullpen. Zack Cozart had the best day at the plate with three hits and an RBI.
McCullers comes into today with a 5-1 record and a 3.72 ERA. Those are the headline numbers, but underneath that are a few worrying things.

Firstly, his walk rate has ticked up from last year back to his career average. Then there are his inconsistent strikeout numbers. While he holds a 10.2 K/9 at the moment that is fuelled by early success. In his last four starts he has managed just a 6.5 K/9. He is at least keeping the ball in the park, but McCullers is a volatile proposition at the moment.

While McCullers’ numbers hide some problems, Heaney’s hide some success. He had a rough start to his season, not pitching until mid-April and then getting hit hard in his second outing by San Francisco. However, since then he has allowed just four runs in three starts for a 2.12 ERA, he’s struck out 16 in 17 innings, and walked just five. Heaney hasn’t gone beyond the sixth inning since 2015 as he makes his way back from Tommy John and other problems, but he is starting to find his feet again.

Japanese rookie sensation Shohei Ohtani continued to impress in his sixth major league start Sunday, racking up 11 strikeouts while pitching three-hit ball into the seventh inning as the Los Angeles Angels beat the Minnesota Twins 2-1.

Despite dominating on the mound, April’s American League Rookie of the Month did not get the win at Angel Stadium, but his efforts were not wasted after Zack Cozart secured the victory with a walk-off single.

Ohtani left the game after giving up his second walk with one out in the seventh. He was denied the win after reliever Cam Bedrosian allowed the game-tying RBI single by Joe Mauer.
“I was disappointed (about being pulled out), the game-tying run was meant to happen,” Ohtani said. “I couldn’t get the win, but winning the game is what matters most. I struck out batters whenever possible while getting them to (ground out and fly out), so I did a good job of pitching aggressively.”

In an entertaining duel with Twins rookie starter Fernando Romero, Ohtani threw a season-high 103 pitches on his way to reaching a franchise-record 43 strikeouts by a pitcher in his first six games.




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