Rangers Open Key Series With Win Against Astros – Sportsbook Review

Rangers Open Key Series With Win Against Astros – Sportsbook Review

Thursday, July 11, 2019 10:24 AM UTC

Thursday, Jul. 11, 2019 10:24 AM UTC

The Lone Star State has center stage with the only matchup on Thursday’s MLB odds board when the Houston Astros travel to meet the Rangers.

Willie’s MLB season picks record: 70-81-4 (-7.40 units)

Houston (57-33 SU, 38-47 O/U) at Texas (48-42 SU, 42-46 O/U)

Thursday, 8:05 p.m. ET (ESPN)

Free MLB Pick: Rangers ML

Best Line Offered: Bookmaker

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If there’s going to be a challenge mounted by the Texas in the AL West, the Rangers have a great opportunity to present said challenge in the next 11 days. Sitting nine games back and currently third in the division, seven of the Rangers’ first nine games coming out of the All-Star break are against the Houston Astros, beginning with the first of four Thursday in the only contest on the MLB odds card.

It’s a big enough series for us to follow with free MLB picks for three of the games, and Houston still hasn’t officially named its starting pitcher for Game 1. Some shops have hung numbers that favor the Astros behind rookie Framber Valdez (3-4, 4.57), Texas going with Lance Lynn (11-4, 3.91) and a big 11-run total being listed for Thursday.

Lynn Seeking 1st Win Over Houston Since St. Louis Days In 2012

Houston treaded water for the most part in June, but began to heat up towards the end of the month to win seven of its last eight games prior to the break. If it is Valdez who takes the mound in the bottom of the first tonight, the lefty will be looking for vast improvements after successive starts against the Yankees and Pirates went south a couple of weeks ago. The Astros farmed him out following a 3-inning, 6-ER loss at home to Pittsburgh as -110 chalk at Heritage, and his only encounters with Texas this season have been three relief appearances totaling 5.1 innings.

Texas enjoyed a fine month of June by going 18-11, but the Rangers stumbled towards the end and dropped six of their last eight games while being outscored 52-33 before the break. Lynn rides into the second half on the strength of wins in his last four trips to the hill, tossing quality starts in three of those outings to give him 13 among his 18 total assignments. The former Ole Miss star fell to the Astros in Houston a couple of months ago, a 3-0 setback with all three runs coming plateward on solo homers.

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Rivalry Trends, Arlington Weather & A Free Pick

The Rangers have a pretty good lead overall in this rivalry, going back to before the teams became division rivals as well as since the Astros joined the AL in 2013. Houston has been digging into that gap recently and the Astros hold a 6-4 lead this campaign in hopes of winning a 3rd-straight season series from Texas. It’s the last time the Rangers will host Houston in this ballpark, and they’ve taken four of the six played in Arlington in 2019. Totals have split in those six matchups.

It will still be plenty warm when Lynn delivers the first pitch this evening, sunshine still drenching much of the park with a 10-13 mph NE blow (LF corner to RF corner). I like the Rangers as home ‘dogs in this Lone Star State fight.

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