The Minnesota Twins and Houston Astros square off on Tuesday with first pitch set for 8:10 p.m. ET. The game takes place at Minute Maid Park in Houston and will only be available on local TV or through an MLB.tv subscription. Aaron Sanchez (3-3, 7.68 ERA) will start for the Twins with Justin Verlander (15-3, 1.95 ERA) on the mound for the Astros.
Minnesota (62-58) will look to avoid a four-game losing streak and will enter the day two games behind the Cleveland Guardians for the top spot in the American League Central. Sanchez will make his eighth start of the season and second with the Twins after starting the year with the Washington Nationals. The Twins rank No. 9 in OPS (.730), and their top home run hitter Byron Buxton won’t play in this game due to a hip injury.
Houston (78-45) lost two of three games against the Atlanta Braves over the weekend but came away with a 5-4 victory on Sunday. Verlander’s excellence has continued this entire season as he goes into start No. 23 and allowed three runs over seven innings in last Tuesday’s start against the Chicago White Sox. The Astros have the fifth-best slugging percentage (.424), and Kyle Tucker has a 14-game hitting streak heading into Tuesday night.
Twins vs. Astros
Pitchers: Aaron Sanchez vs. Justin Verlander
First pitch: 8:10 p.m. ET
Twins local broadcast: Bally Sports North
Astros local broadcast: AT&T SportsNet-Southwest
Live stream: MLB.tv (subscription)
Odds, picks & predictions
Run Line: Astros -1.5 (-165)
Run total: 8
Moneyline odds: Astros -340, Twins +280
Moneyline pick: Twins +280
I cannot take a team as -340 favorites against a potential division champ no matter the matchup, so the value is on Minnesota in this spot. Sanchez’s season-long numbers are very bad but he threw five shutout innings in his last start, which came on August 1. Meanwhile, Verlander gave up three runs in both of his last starts, and the Astros were defeated in both of them.
Player prop pick: Justin Verlander Under 5.5 strikeouts (+155)
His strikeout numbers are not what they once were, but Verlander will enter with a respectable 8.7 K/9. However, he threw five or fewer strikeouts in three of his last four starts, and the Twins strike out 8.1 times per game, the 10th fewest in the league.
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