Astros vs. Rays Prediction
The Houston Astros will begin their 2019 campaign on the road, as they will visit the Tampa Bay Rays at 4:00 p.m. ET on Thursday. Will the game live up to it’s pitcher’s duel potential?
Game Snapshot & Odds
Thursday, March 28, 2019
4:00 p.m. ET, Citizens Bank Park
TV: AT&T SportsNet Southwest (Astros); FS Sun (Rays
Compare odds and from multiple different online sportsbooks and shop for the best lines at our new Baseball Odds & Betting Page.
Public Betting Trends
According to oddsmakers from online sports book BetNow.eu, the Astros as a -143 favorite while the Rays are listed as +118 money line underdogs. As of this writing, 59% of betting tickets are on the Astros to win outright. This information is subject to change, however, so be sure to check out our MLB Public Betting Page for updated figures on this game.
Houston Astros Fantasy Spin
Justin Verlander was outstanding in his final Grapefruit League start of the season on Saturday, pitching four scoreless innings against the Marlins while fanning nine. Verlander allowed two hits and no walks. An outstanding final tune-up for the right-hander in his first action since reportedly agreeing to a $66 million contract extension over two years. We'll see him open the year against Blake Snell and the Rays on Thursday. That should be fun.
Philadelphia Phillies Fantasy Spin
Aaron Nola surrendered two runs on four hits over 2 2/3 innings in Saturday's Grapefruit League start against the Astros. The right-hander struggled with his command in this one, issuing three free passes while striking out two. He hasn't been as sharp as we're used to seeing this spring, compiling a 5.19 ERA and 1.50 WHIP across 8 2/3 innings, though he has racked up 11 strikeouts.
MLB Betting Trends
The Astros are 7-1 in Verlander’s last eight starts and are 18-3 in his last 21 outings on the road.
The Rays are 22-7 in Snell’s last 29 starts and are 11-1 in his last 12 outings versus the American League West.
In the last three Astros-Rays matchup in which Snell started, Houston was held to a combined six runs in those three games dating back to August of 2017. In fact, these two same pitchers squared off on June 19 last year and the two teams combined for only three runs in a 2-1 Tampa victory. The under is a near-perfect 5-0-1 in the last six meetings between these two teams and is 17-4-2 in the last 23 meetings at Tropicana Field. With the Astros just 5-14 in their last 19 games in Tampa, the Rays offer plenty of value with their ace on the mound. That said, the best play in my eyes is the under.
The Pick: Astros/Rays under 6.5