Dallas Keuchel (13-6, 2.40 ERA) takes the hill for the Houston Astros (62-53) as they square off against Alfredo Simon (10-6, 4.74 ERA) and the Detroit Tigers (55-59) in the first of a three-game series at Minute Maid Park. Action begins at 8:10 p.m. ET on Friday, Aug. 14 and can be seen on FSDT and RTSW.
Keuchel pitched 7.2 innings in his last outing, surrendering three runs, striking out three and walking two in a 3-1 defeat to the Athletics. George Springer (.264, 43 Rs, 13 HRs, 29 RBIs, 14 SBs) went 1 for 2 Wednesday with one run and one stolen base. Simon went 6.2 innings, surrendering six runs, striking out one and walking one in a 7-6 defeat to the Red Sox in his most recent start. Miguel Cabrera (.350, 43 Rs, 15 HRs, 54 RBIs, 1 SB) has been successful at the plate for the Tigers, going 2 for 2 Wednesday with one RBI.
The odds for Houston and Detroit are even, while the Over/Under (O/U) is unavailable as of now. The Astros have no trouble scoring as they rank fifth in the AL in offense with 4.4 runs per game. Houston is one of the best in the MLB in terms of steals, swiping 86 bases. Crossing over to the pitching staff, opposing offenses have been stifled by the Astros, who have a team ERA of only 3.42. The Astros are the third-best team in the league at limiting hits and walks to their opponents, recording a WHIP of 1.19 so far this season.
The Astros have a 40-33 record against right-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Simon takes the mound. Keuchel (LHP) will be on the hill against the Tigers, who have a 15-12 record against left-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - Hou
After last game's shutout win against the San Francisco, the Astros now have 11 shutouts this season. The Tigers have been shut out in four games this season.
The Astros are coming into this game after allowing one walk during their last outing. The Tigers have an 11-19 record when opponents give up that many walks or fewer.
When they are outhit, the Tigers are 7-43. The Astros have a 12-38 record when opponents outhit them.
Ranking first in home runs, Houston has hit 158 this season. Detroit ranks 11th with 113 home runs.
Ranking first in hits, Detroit has earned 9.45 per game this season. Houston ranks 15th with 8.08 hits.
Ranking eighth, Houston is in the top 10 of the league for its on-base plus slugging percentage (.734). Detroit ranks in the top five at third with an OPS of .758.
When the Tigers allow at least one home run, they are 26-47, well-matched with the Astros who are 22-37 when allowing at least one homer.