Worst Team in Baseball Faces Defending Champs
The Oakland Athletics (10-35), who hold the worst record in baseball, head east to take on the Houston Astros (24-19) – the defending World Series champions. The Athletics are 1-4 in their last five games, while the Astros are riding a four-game winning streak.
MLB lines have Houston as the overwhelming favorite for the first matchup of the three-game series (-235), while Oakland will be an underdog for the 10th consecutive game. Will the A’s find a way to pull off the upset?
Ruiz Intriguing Prop Option for A’s
Oakland’s struggles have continued, going 2-8 in its last 10 games. It snapped a three-game losing streak on May 16 with an upset win over the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Athletics covered the MLB spread thanks to a scoring outburst with three home runs in the 9-8 win.
Center fielder Esteury Ruiz is an intriguing option for your MLB picks and parlays. He has totaled five hits in the last three games.
Bases loaded? Game on the line? Esteury Ruiz up? OF COURSE IT’S A WALK-OFF KNOCK! #Athletics #RootedInOakland pic.twitter.com/AMwCQ18AbT
— Uprooted (@uprootedoakland) May 17, 2023
Houston’s Hot Streak Should Continue
Houston comes off a series sweep against the Chicago Cubs, averaging 6.7 runs. The A’s allow 7.42 runs per game (30th). The over for the Astros’ run total could be a mainstay for online gambling in this series.
Third baseman Alex Bregman has seven hits and two home runs in the last five games. Bregman going yard early is an enticing MLB live betting option.
Ken Waldichuk (1-2, 7.02 ERA) vs. Brandon Bielak (0-1, 3.29 ERA)
Oakland’s left-hander Ken Waldichuk has posted at least a 7.00 ERA in all eight starts. He has also allowed five home runs over his last four. This could be another tough out for Waldichuk, as Houston’s slugging has been improving.
Brandon Bielak was promoted from AAA after Jose Urquidy was placed on the injured list about two weeks ago. Bielak has taken advantage of the opportunity with a 3.29 ERA. However, teams are consistently getting hits with his underwhelming 1.83 WHIP. Bielak had his best showing yet in his last appearance, with one earned run in five innings of work.
Athletics vs Astros Head-to-Head
Oakland has won four of the last 10 matchups, but Houston is 6-1 in the last seven meetings. Waldichuk started in the last clash and was torched, leading to the Astros’ 11-2 win.
Athletics vs Astros Game Information
- Game: Athletics (10-35) vs Astros (24-19)
- Location: Minute Maid Park, Houston, TX
- Day/Time: Friday, May 19, 8:10 p.m. ET
- Athletics vs Astros Live stream: MLB.tv
Athletics vs Astros Betting Lines
Houston’s batting order has been red-hot, and Oakland’s Waldichuk is struggling. The Athletics’ relievers will not bring much help either as one of baseball’s worst bullpens. Take the over for the game’s run total.
Pick: Over 9½ (-105)
MLB odds have Houston priced as heavy favorites. There is not too much risk involved as the Astros should roll against the A’s. However, this does not provide much room for profit. Instead, look at the run line.
Pick: Astros -250
Pick the Astros to cover the 1½ run line (-120). Oakland’s last eight losses were by at least two runs. Houston is poised for another big-hitting night against Waldichuk.
Pick: Astros -1½ (-120)