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ALCS Game 2: Can The Astros Rebound vs Yankees With Verlander?

Yankees vs Astros Betting Odds October 13, 2019

The Yankees stole home-field advantage with a decisive Game 1 victory, but Game 2 will be much tougher with Justin Verlander pitching for Houston. Will the underdog Yankees be able to grab a 2-0 series lead, or will Verlander continue his playoff dominance against the Bronx Bombers and get Houston back in the series?

Matchup Information
  • New York Yankees vs Houston Astros​ (Matchup Report)
  • Date/Time: October 13, 8:08 p.m. ET
  • TV Coverage: FS1
  • Opening Odds: NYY +140/HOU -155 | O/U 7.5 (Line History)
  • Starting Pitchers: NYY Paxton (15-6, 3.88 ERA), HOU Verlander (22-7, 2.66 ERA)

Opening Odds Analysis

A little surprising that the opening odds are nearly identical to Game 1, as James Paxton is less proven in the playoffs than Masahiro Tanaka, while Justin Verlander is a big upgrade from Zack Greinke. With Houston’s offense continuing their slumber, and Verlander expected to keep New York from putting up crooked numbers, the total also opened at 7.5 runs, a full 1.5 runs fewer than Game 1.

New York News & Notes

The Yankees couldn’t have asked for a better outcome in Game 1, posting an emphatic 7-0 victory. Masahiro Tanaka was brilliant; facing the minimum while allowing just one hit through six innings, while offensively the legend of Gleyber Torres continues to grow.

After terrorizing the Twins in the ALDS, Torres was moved to third in the batting order for Game 1. The 22-year-old second baseman responded by going 3-for-5 with a double, home run and five RBI on the night, becoming the youngest American League player in postseason history to record five RBI in a game. He’s hitting .471 so far in the playoffs and has added numerous highlight-reel defensive plays as well.

With Verlander on the mound in Game 2 (and Gerrit Cole waiting after that), the Yankees will need Torres to keep up his torrid pace and continue to drive the offense.

Houston News & Notes

The Astros were a little concerned about the lack of offensive production following their ALDS victory over Tampa Bay. Game 1 against New York did not help alleviate those concerns as Houston managed just three hits while getting shut out for the first time since July 11.

The entire team was silenced in Game 1. Houston has to be getting frustrated with the lack of depth hitting from their usually-deep lineup. Their third-through-sixth hitters (Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel) are all hitting .316 or better in the playoffs. The rest of their regular starters, however, has no one batting over .222.

With the offense stalling, Houston will lean on their Game 2 starter, Justin Verlander, to get the series back even. It’s a pretty good bet for Houston: He’s pitching on full rest, is having another Cy Young-caliber season and was the ALCS MVP in 2017 against New York, going 2-0 with a 0.56 ERA in two starts.

Betting Pick: HOUSTON TT OVER 3.5 runs

James Paxton was shaky in his postseason debut against Minnesota. The Astros can’t afford to fall behind 2-0, so I’m expecting them to come out slugging against the big lefty.

Shark Bites
  • New York is 4-1 SU in their last 5 games vs Houston.
  • The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Yankees' last 7 road games.
  • Gleyber Torres is hitting .457 in the postseason.