Tom Stryker’s Free Baseball Play June 13th


#915 HOUSTON with Javier (-160) over Texas with Hearn at 8:05 PM EST
Off a series loss to the Marlins and with a solid 8.5-game lead over the Rangers in the AL West, the Astros will travel 255.0 miles to Arlington and do a number on the Rangers. Texas enters this battle off a pair of upset wins over Chicago (scored 19 runs in the process) and this will be a difficult spot for manager Chris Woodward and his crew.

Young right-hander Christian Javier will toe the rubber for the visiting team. So far this season, No. 53 has appeared in 11 games for the ‘Stros (seven starts) and been tapped for 16 earned runs and 35 hits in 44.2 innings of work. Javier struck out 56 and walked 16 on his way to a 3-3 tally with a solid 3.22 ERA. In a pair of outings against the Lone Stars this year, Christian was nicked for only three earned runs and seven hits in 11.0 frames. Javier fanned 13, walked three, and posted a 1-1 mark with a strong 2.45 ERA.

Tall southpaw Taylor Hearn will counter for the home team. In 2022, No. 52 has made 11 starts for the Rangers and been plowed for 30 earned runs and 58 hits in 50.0 innings. Hearn fanned 47 and issued 25 free passes on his way to a 4-4 record with an elevated 5.40 ERA. Pitching under the lights has been an issue for Taylor too. At night, Hearns has been hammered for 18 earned runs and 26 hits in 26.1 frames. After the math, that adds up to a 2-2 mark with a rough 6.15 ERA.

Several quality team trends support this Best Bet. Houston has won 39 of its last 56 in the first game of a series, 27 of its last 38 as a favorite, 11 of its last 15 when facing a left-handed starter, and 14 of its last 19 against AL West foes. On the other side of the yard, Texas has slipped in 51 of its last 76 in the first game of a series, and 17 of its last 29 when fighting a foe that owns a team won/loss percentage greater than .500.

The Astros have dominated this series to the tune of 36-15 in the last 51 meetings and they’ll have no trouble staying focused especially after losing two of three to the Fins. Take Houston with Javier. Thanks and best of luck, Tom.


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