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Low Total In Oakland Makes OVER The Play In Game One

Frankie Montas & Oakland open up a big series against the Astros on September 24th, 2021.

Only the Los Angeles Dodgers (+247) have a better run differential than the Houston Astros (+219) in all of baseball. The Astros have won seven of their last 10 and still have a chance to catch Tampa Bay for the best record in the American League. 

Losers of four straight, The Oakland Athletics are reeling with their playoff chances fading fast. If Oakland has their sights set on a wild-card spot, they will have to run the table in their remaining nine games and still get some help from the teams above them.

Houston Astros vs Oakland Athletics
  • Date/Time: Sept 24 9:40pm EDT
  • Stadium: Oakland Coliseum
  • TV Coverage: ATT SportsNet SW / NBCSCA
  • Opening Odds: Athletics -116 / O/U 8 (Line History)
  • Visitors Nickname vs Home Nickname Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

The home team Athletics opened up as slight -116 favorites for this game, but currently, this game is a -110 pick’em for both sides. The A’s have lost six straight games at home and have been backed into a position where they can’t afford any more losses this season.

The total opened at 8 but has dropped to 7.5 after some early money pushed it down. The last seven times these teams have met in Oakland, the total has gone OVER the number.

Starting Pitchers Analysis   

In 29 starts this year, 37-year-old Zack Greinke has an impressive 11-6 record for the Astros, but his 4.11 ERA is more than half a run higher than his career earned run average of 3.41. Over his last five starts, the 18 year veteran is 0-3 with a 7.56 ERA.  Greinke has allowed 18 earned runs in his last 13 innings pitched, with two of those starts coming against the lowly Texas Rangers.

In 12 starts since the All-Star break, Frankie Montas is 4-2, with an impressive 2.43 ERA and 1.08 WHIP. The 28-year-old right-hander has 192 strikeouts in 174 innings pitched and with two starts remaining, he should eclipse 200 strikeouts for the first time in his career. In three starts against the Astros this year, Montas has given up only four earned runs in 17.2 innings pitched. 

Astros News & Notes

At 91-62, the Astros have all but wrapped up the AL West division and trail the Tampa Bay Rays by three games for the best record in the American League. Houston will now focus on setting their rotation for the playoffs and trying to get some of their injured players healthy in time for a long postseason run.

One of the Astro players who might get rested regularly between now and the start of the playoffs is Yordan Alvarez. The 24-year-old emerging star has eclipsed 30 home runs and 100 RBI this year already but sat out yesterday’s game with what the team is calling general soreness. No word yet on when Alvarez will return to the lineup.

Michael Brantley leads the Astros with a .315 batting average this season, but has only managed to play in 116 games. Currently Brantly is on the IL with right knee discomfort and it is unknown if he will be back in the Houston lineup before the regular season ends.

Athletics News and Notes

The Oakland Athletics are four games out of a wild-card spot with only nine games remaining. The A’s are coming off a four game series against the Seattle Mariners where they were swept at home, all but eliminating them from the playoff race.

Less than a month after facial surgery to repair broken bones in his face, Chris Bassitt returned to the mound for Oakland last night. The big right-hander looked good in his return, pitching three scoreless innings and allowing only one hit while striking out four.

Jed Lowrie continues to battle a hand injury and the switch-hitter is still only available to bat from the left side of the plate. Lowrie didn’t start last night against a left-handed pitcher but did pinch-hit later in the game.  Against the right-handed Greinke, Lowrie might get the start tonight.

Staff Betting Pick: Over 7.5

This total opened at 8 and has dropped half a run since then. Houston will not be dressing their best lineup at this point of the season, instead opting to rest players for the playoffs. However, Zack Greinke has been horrendous of late and there is still enough power in both these lineups to score some runs. Take the OVER in this one.

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Shark Bites
  • The total has gone OVER in 5 of Houston's last 6 games
  • Houston is 5-1 SU in their last 6 games on the road
  • Oakland is 0-6 SU in their last 6 games at home