Astros Won Series Opener Via Shutout
The Houston Astros go for a third straight win when they take on the host Cleveland Guardians in the second of a four-game weekend series on Friday night. Houston took the series opener on Thursday night and is in first place in the AL West, leading the second-place Seattle Mariners by 11½ games. Cleveland has lost two of its last three but remains a game behind the first-place Minnesota Twins in the AL Central standings. This should be another good game, so make sure you read our in-depth preview of the contest to help you decide how you want to bet online.
Verlander Dominates Again
The Houston Astros have one of the most reliable starters in the game in Justin Verlander, who notched his MLB-leading 15th win on Thursday. Verlander went six scoreless innings to extend his personal winning streak to seven starts.
“It’s fun to be behind the plate for him,” Astros catcher Martin Maldonado said. “Watching his preparation between games and his execution on the mound, that’s what future Hall of Famers do. I think he was born that way.”
Hoping to have some of that same kind of success on Friday night will be left-hander Framber Valdez, who is 9-4 with a 2.80 ERA, striking out 117 in 128⅔ innings He took a no-decision in his last outing against the Seattle Mariners on Saturday, going seven innings and allowing three runs on five hits while striking out seven and walking one.
Maldonado helped his pitcher in Thursday’s game with a double, a home run, and three RBIs.
The other big bat in the Astros lineup in the series opener was that of outfielder Chas McCormick, who was 3-for-5 with a home run, three RBIs and two runs scored.
Guardians Need To Find Some Offense
The Cleveland Guardians have the ability to score, as shown by their seven runs in Wednesday’s win over the Arizona Diamondbacks. But in facing the Houston Astros, the Guardians are stepping up in competition and will need runs if they hope to come away with wins.
Third baseman Jose Ramirez leads the team with 21 home runs and 86 RBIs, but he was 0-for-4 in the series opener.
Outfielder Steven Kwan was 1-for-4 at the plate to extend his hitting streak to 18 games. Kwan is batting .297 with 17 doubles, three triples, two home runs, 28 RBIs, and 51 runs scored.
Right-hander Hunter Gaddis is expected to make his major league debut when he gets the start for Friday’s contest. Gaddis was a fifth-round pick in the 2019 draft and has moved from Double-A to Triple-A this season before getting the call-up for Friday’s game. He has a 5-3 record in 16 starts in the minors this season.
Astros vs Guardians Head-To-Head
The Houston Astros have dominated the season series against the Cleveland Guardians over the last two seasons, improving to 9-2 against them with Thursday’s victory. Houston won the season series 6-1 a season ago, its third straight season series win against the Guardians, and now leads this season’s matchup 3-1.
Houston has gone undefeated at Progressive Field in its last five games at the venue and has won the majority of its games in Cleveland in each season it has played there since 2018 (the teams did not play in 2020). The MLB lines are anticipating that success continuing, with the Astros heavy favorites to earn another victory on Friday night.
Astros vs Guardians Game Information
- Game: Astros (69-38) vs Guardians (54-51)
- Location: Progressive Field
- Day/Time: Friday, Aug 5, 7:10 p.m. ET
- Astros vs Guardians Live stream: MLB.tv
Astros vs Guardians Betting Lines
|Houston Astros F. Valdez -L||-1½ -125||-200||8½-115o||
|Cleveland Guardians H.Gaddis – R||+1½ +105||+170||8½-105u||
Astros vs Guardians Prediction
The Houston Astros are ready for the stretch run for a possible division title and long run in the playoffs. That’s not exactly the team you want to be facing for your major league debut, as Gaddis will be doing for the Cleveland Guardians. He might have a bright future, but the Astros will come out on top in this one.
When doing your MLB betting, take Houston to get the road win.
“The odds and predictions in the article are based on the time of writing and publication. They may differ as to when the actual event takes place.”