LA Angels (76-73) at Houston (79-71)
When: Monday, September 21st, 2015
Where: Minute Maid Park, Houston, TX
Time: 8:10 ET
TV: DirecTV 674, 692 Radio: XM 178
The Angels and Astros begin a huge 3-game series tonight in Houston with both teams fighting for a Wild Card spot. The slumping Astros have fallen a game and a half behind Texas in the American League West, but still own a 2 game lead over the Angels and Twins for the final Wild Card spot. The Astros could put this away with a sweep while the Angels could make things interesting with a series win. Houston ace Dallas Keuchel is coming off the worst outing of his career as he served up three homers while allowing nine runs and 11 hits in 4 2/3 innings in a loss at Texas last week. The left-hander has been perfect at home this season, winning all 13 decisions while compiling a 1.49 ERA and 0.90 WHIP. The Astros are also much better at home where they are 50-25 and only 29-46 on the road. The Astros will have the next 6 at home before finishing the season with 6 games on the road. OF Colby Rasmus homered twice in Sunday’s win over Oakland and has five multi-hit performances in his last 10 games.
The Angels won the first three games of a 4-game series at Minnesota over the weekend before losing Sunday’s finale and are just 32-42 on the road this season. They will return home after this series for 6 games with Seattle and Oakland before finishing the season in Texas. LA first baseman/designated hitter Albert Pujols is mired in a 2-for-31 slump over his last eight games and is batting just .152 with one homer in 66 September at-bats. Jered Weaver will get the start tonight for Anaheim. He gave up three runs and six hits while losing to Seattle in his last turn and was ejected after 4 2/3 innings when he plunked Kyle Seager with a pitch. He beat Houston in his previous outing when he allowed two runs and five hits over six innings to improve to 5-2 with a 2.47 ERA in eight career starts against the Astros. Weaver is 3-9 with a 6.21 ERA in 13 road starts this season.
It’s hard not to go with Keuchel at home this year. You can see Weaver’s stats on the road and Keuchel’s 13-0 record at home. It’s a big line, so I’m going to take the runline tonight. In Keuchel’s 16 starts at home this year, the Astros have covered the -1.5 runline 13 times.
Pick: Astros -1.5 +115