Minnesota Twins (13-7) at Houston Astros (13-9)
Tuesday, April 23rd, 2019 8:10PM EST (Minute Maid Park)
Spread: Minnesota Twins (+130) Houston Astros (-140) O/U: 9.5
MLB Draftkings Picks Minnesota Twins vs Houston Astros
Welcome to Texas, where the BBQ is good, and baseball is even better. Tonight, we have an exciting matchup between two of the American League’s best ball clubs. The Minnesota Twins are sitting atop of the AL Central with a 1.5 game cushion over the Indians, while the Houston Astros are sitting tight in second place in the AL West. These two teams have shown plenty of promise to kick off the season and are well underway to chasing a division title. Let’s look into a little preview of what should be expected to tonight.
In last night’s series opener versus the Twins, the Astros couldn’t quite get it done, falling 9-5. Getting back Carlos Correa has been a blessing for this team, as he jacked a three-run homer in the seventh inning. Outfielder Michael Brantley is finally staying healthy and also swinging a healthy bat. Brantley is hitting .310 with four homers and 15 RBI’s. He’s also been the speedster on the diamond, leading the team with three successful swipes. Brantley isn’t the only one locked in at the plate, however. Fellow teammates Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and George Springer have a combined 19 home runs. Offensively, this squad ranks amongst the best in the American League.
Former Milwaukee Brewer Wade Miley (1-2, 3.32 ERA) will step foot on the mound in the first inning today for the Astros. Miley was pinned with a loss to Oakland in his last start, giving up two runs and four hits over six innings. The offense didn’t quite come through when he needed it, which is another reason why he lost his other start against the Tampa Bay Rays, in which he gave six quality innings. Miley will give this team a good start, the offense just needs to do their part.
The Twinkies will be looking to extend their season-high winning streak to five games as they get ready for game 2 of this 3-game series versus Houston. Minnesota has scored a whopping 35 runs over the past four games, including nine last night. Shortstop Jorge Polanco went 4-for-5 with a home run and four RBI’s. Polanco must be working with retired Twins great Joe Mauer, as his batting average is now sitting at .392 for the season. Free agent signee Nelson Cruz hasn’t hit a bunch of home runs so far, but he is producing. Cruz has 13 RBI’s, good for second most on the team. He’s also sporting a .315 average; as long as he stays healthy in his DH spot, he should continue to produce.
Set to start tonight for the Twins is right-hander Michael Pineda (2-1, 5.30 ERA). Pineda was smoked for six runs, including two home runs, in his last start versus the Blue Jays. The veteran has punched out 16 batters and issued a handful of walks in 18 2/3 innings over four starts. In seven career games against the Astros, Pineda is just 3-3 with a 4.40 ERA. Aforementioned Correa, Springer and Altuve have roughed up Pineda, going a combined 19-46 with five home runs. Pineda must be able to control the at-bats against those sluggers if he wants a chance to win.
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Minnesota’s last 5 games
Minnesota is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games
The total has gone OVER in 5 of Minnesota’s last 6 games on the road
The total has gone OVER in 4 of Houston’s last 6 games
Houston is 1-4 SU in their last 5 games
Houston is 4-1 SU in their last 5 games when playing at home against Minnesota
Free MLB Pick Houston Astros vs Minnesota Twins
Reluctantly, I am predicting the Twins to lose their winning streak tonight. Having watched Miley quite a bit over the years, I fully expect him to control the first five innings and put his team in a good position to win this game. Both teams are capable of shooting off a ton of runs and putting on a show, but I think the Astros have the upper hand tonight. If Pineda gets in early trouble, it could be a long night for the Twins bullpen. Tune in tonight…and let’s win some money!