TOM STRYKER’S FREE BASEBALL SELECTION WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 20TH
#968 HOUSTON with Javier (-112) over Baltimore with Bradish at 2:10 PM EST
In a bad mood off back-to-back home losses to the O’s, the ‘Stros will make sure they grab this dub in order to avoid being swept. Houston’s advantage in the AL West is down to a half-game over Seattle and Texas and manager Dusty Baker’s boys need this victory in order to stay on top in the division.
Right-hander Cristian Javier will pick up the pill for the home team. Facing the Royals, Padres, and Yankees in his last three performances, No. 53 was tripped for nine earned runs and 13 hits in 15.0 innings of work. Cristian struck out 19 and walked four on his way to an 0-2 record with a soft 5.40 ERA. Thankfully, with 12 starts in the books inside Minute Maid Park, Javier has pitched well giving up just 27 earned runs and 58 hits in 63.0 frames. That’s good enough for a 5-2 mark with a respectable 3.86 ERA.
Young righty Kyle Bradish will toe the rubber for the visitors. Matched up against the Devil Rays, Red Sox, and Diamondbacks in his last three outings, No. 39 was clipped for eight earned runs and 15 hits in 19.0 innings. Kyle whiffed 20 and walked three on his way to a 2-1 tally with a 3.79 ERA. Even more impressive, in a pair of starts versus the Astros last season, Bradish surrendered no earned runs and four hits in 16.2 frames. That shakes down to a 2-0 record with a powerful 0.00 ERA. Asking KB to do that a third time is a tall order.
With both arms certainly capable, the following trends will help bring this Best Bet home. Houston has quietly cashed 73 of its last 111 when playing during the day and 12 of its last 15 priced competitively from -125 to +125 with Javier holding the pearl.
With their final six games on the road against the M’s and Diamondbacks, the Astros understand the importance of winning their next four home games. Take Houston with Javier. Thanks and best of luck, Tom.
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