With their win last night, the Rangers won back-to-back games for the first time since August 14th-15th. Now, they are in the position to sweep and win their first series since that time as well. We’ll preview their series finale with the Mets before going over which side I’ll be backing on the F5 run-line.
To say Andrew Heaney needed a strong outing last night is an understatement. After three straight shortened outings, the lefty took advantage of an inconsistent Mets lineup and threw 5.1 scoreless innings with seven strikeouts. Unfortunately for Heaney, he would not get the win since his offense couldn’t score their first run until the 7th inning.
That run came from a solo home run by Mitch Garver, as his solo shot and Ezequiel Duran's RBI single in the 9th would be the only offense Texas needed in their 2-1 win. Now, with a chance to sweep the Mets, the Rangers will have Dane Dunning on the mound for his 21st start. After a stretch of solid outings, the Rangers righty has experienced some regression over his last two outings, allowing seven earned runs in his last nine innings.
It seems as if playing the Mets has helped the Rangers turn it around a bit, so we’ll see if that will also be the case with Dunning. The right-hander is getting this Mets lineup amid a streak of seven straight games without scoring more than three runs. In last night’s loss, New York came up with seven hits but left 16 runners on base, so Mark Vientos' solo home run in the bottom of the 9th would be just something for his stats and not part of an exciting comeback.
Rounding out the series on the mound for New York will be Denyi Reyes. In his first start of the season on August 12th, the Braves roughed up the right-hander, as he allowed five earned runs on eight hits in 4.2 innings of work. This was the second straight outing in which Reyes allowed five earned runs, the only difference being he allowed all five runs in one inning in the first one.
The Rangers F5 run-line of (-.5) is currently priced at (-105), and I’ll be backing them for my play. Even with their struggles, the Rangers remain the second most profitable F5 run-line team in the league, and now they get to take on a struggling Mets starter with two wins already under their belt in this series. Between the advantage on the mound and at the dish, I think the Rangers come out of the fifth inning with a lead.
Ranking 13th in OPS, 12th in wRC+, and 9th in hard hit percentage against right-handed pitching on the road over the past month, the Rangers are in a good position to light up Reyes. The Mets starter has a 7.95 xFIP for the second half of the season and a .275 expected batting average, so between those numbers and his tendency to give up hard contact, Texas should have all the possibilities to put runs on the board early and often.
While Reyes is in a bad spot to turn things around, Dane Dunning is in a good one. The right-hander will face a Mets lineup hitting .231 and ranks 18th in wOBA against right-handed pitching at home over the past month. Dunning has also been better on the road this season, pitching to a 3.34 FIP with an 11.9% K-BB%.
Texas Rangers F5 (-.5)(-105)