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[BBL] Sep 12, 2017

MLB Betting Preview: Astros at Angels

By Gracenote

Houston Astros at Los Angeles Angels (+0.5; 7.5)

Instead of maintaining their hold on the best record in the American League following a three-game sweep of Seattle to begin a 10-game road trip, the Houston Astros were humiliated by the worst team in their division over the weekend. The Astros will attempt to turn the page beginning Tuesday when they send the last starting pitcher to steer them to a victory to the mound in the opener of a three-game set versus the host Los Angeles Angels.

Right hander Justin Verlander and centre fielder Cameron Maybin - both of whom were acquired on Aug. 31 - teamed up to propel Houston to its sixth and seventh consecutive wins last Tuesday and Wednesday. Los Angeles closed to within one game of the second and final wild-card spot in the AL with Sunday's 5-3 win against the Mariners, snapping a three-game skid.

PITCHING MATCHUP: Astros RH Justin Verlander (11-8, 3.74 ERA) vs. Angels RH Garrett Richards (0-0, 1.13)

Verlander was victorious in his Astros debut last Tuesday, striking out seven and yielding one run on a solo homer among the six hits he allowed over six innings at Seattle. The six-time All-Star has been exceptional since the Midsummer Classic, going 6-2 with a 2.33 ERA while permitting two earned runs or fewer in nine of those 11 outings. Angels centre fielder Mike Trout is 2-for-16 with a pair of solo home runs against Verlander.

Richards made his first start in exactly five months last Tuesday in the same venue he took his previous big-league turn, settling for a no-decision in Oakland after giving up one run on four hits in 3 1/3 frames. Richards is 5-3 with a 3.73 ERA in 12 career appearances (nine starts) against the Astros but hasn't faced Houston since 2015.

WALK-OFFS

1. The Angels posted their 43rd comeback victory of the season Sunday, moving within four of matching the club record.

2. Since July 4, Houston INF Alex Bregman is hitting .330 with 20 doubles, eight homers and 32 RBIs.

3. Los Angeles DH Albert Pujols needs one more homer to break his tie with Jim Thome (612) for sole possession of seventh place on the all-time list.
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