The Angels and Astros will kick off a four-game set tonight in Houston, as the third-place Angels have a prime opportunity to gain some ground on the second-place Astros. We’ll preview tonight’s matchup before going over my best prop play for the action, which happens to be coming in at plus money.
The bright side for Houston heading into this series is they still have a three-game lead over the Angels in the division race despite losing their series against the Twins, and they get to remain at home. Last night saw two rookie pitchers facing off, and Minnesota starter Louie Varland won the battle over Hunter Brown as he struck out five with no earned runs allowed in seven innings. The only offense the Astros could muster up was solo home runs by Jake Meyers and Yainer Diaz.
Houston has not announced who will be starting tonight on the mound, but based on the recent rotation, Framber Valdez would likely get the nod. Across 11 starts and 72 innings, the lefty has pitched to a 2.38 ERA with 77 strikeouts and 15 walks. Valdez has picked up two straight wins over the A’s, and in his most recent outing, he went six innings with five strikeouts and one earned run allowed.
If Valdez does end up getting the start, or if they turn to a six-man rotation, the Astros will face an Angels lineup that scored 12 runs yesterday while winning their series over the White Sox. Los Angeles is a tough team to beat when they have the long ball working like they did yesterday, as they left the yard five times, including two from Shohei Ohtani. In total, LA hit nine home runs in their three-game set against Chicago.
Getting the ball for the Angels tonight will be left-hander Reid Detmers. The lefty has made nine starts and thrown 45.7 innings, in which he has a 4.93 ERA with 58 strikeouts and 19 walks. The Marlins gave Detmers his fourth loss of the year in his most recent outing, as he went five innings with five strikeouts but allowed ten hits and three earned runs.
Reid Detmers’ strikeout total is currently set at 5.5, and I’ll be taking the over for my play which is priced at (+110). The left-hander is averaging 6.44 punch-outs a game this season and has gone over this total in six of his nine starts up to this point. He faces a Houston team tonight that has struggled with lefties at home over the past month, so I think this is a great spot to get him in, especially at plus money.
The Astros were 10th in strikeout percentage against lefties at home in May. In the last four games, they faced a left-handed starter at home, they struck out six or more times in three of them. Now they’ll face a starter in Detmers that is in the 79th percentile in strikeout percentage and 81st percentile in whiff percentage.
Detmers is currently posting a career-high CSW percentage and has a 34.6% strikeout percentage the first time through the order and a 28.4% strikeout percentage the second time through. In four career starts against Houston, Detmers has recorded six strikeouts in three of them, and now with his two offspeed pitches warranting a whiff percentage of 39.4% or higher, I expect he can do it again.
Reid Detmers Over 5.5 K’s (+110)