The Miami Marlins and Houston Astros square off on Friday with first pitch set for 8:10 p.m. EST. The game takes place at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas and will only be available on local TV or through an MLB.tv subscription. Pablo Lopez is set to start for the Marlins, while Luis Garcia gets the nod for the Astros.
The Marlins have been below average this season as they are 25-30. Garrett Cooper has caught some people by surprise as he’s hitting .539 in his last seven games while slugging .769 with a 1.329 OPS. Pitching-wise, Pablo Lopez has been phenomenal this season, entering Friday’s game 4-2 with a 2.18 ERA and 67 strikeouts. Though Sandy Alcantara is their ace, Lopez is an extremely close second. This could be the best one-two punch pitching duo in the MLB.
The Astros are in sole possession of first place in the AL West at 36-21. Yordan Alvarez has given them a legitimate power threat in the four spot as he is hitting .299 with 17 home runs and 38 runs batted in. As of late, Kyle Tucker has been heating up which is much needed. In his last seven games, Tucker is hitting .429 with two home runs and five runs batted in. On the mound, Luis Garcia has been decent for the Astros. This season, he is 3-4 with a 3.07 ERA.
Marlins vs. Astros
Pitchers: Pablo Lopez vs. Luis Garcia
First pitch: 8:10 p.m. EST
Marlins local broadcast: Bally Sports Florida
Astros local broadcast: AT&T SportsNet Southwest
Live stream: MLB.tv (subscription)
Odds, picks & predictions
Point spread: Astros -1.5
Run total: 7.5
Moneyline odds: Astros -155, Marlins +135
Moneyline pick: Astros -155
As hard as it is to bet against Pablo Lopez, I have to in this one. The Astros are just too good and Luis Garcia is as well. The Marlins lineup is not strong enough to compete against the Astros, and it wouldn't shock me if the Astros swept Miami in this one.
Player prop pick: Pablo Lopez over 5.5 strikeouts (+120)
Although the Astros lineup has been phenomenal, Lopez has just been that great. He’s averaging right around one strikeout per inning. If he can go six innings, the prop should cash handily. I’m fully confident he will go six innings tonight as the Marlins will need that if they want any chance at winning this one.
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