Edinson Volquez (7-6, 4.12 ERA) and Dallas Keuchel (3-9, 5.32 ERA) start in the first of a three-game series between the Kansas City Royals (38-33) and the Houston Astros (37-36) at Ewing M. Kauffman Stadium. The Astros come into this series hoping to extend a five-game winning streak. Action begins at 8:15 p.m. ET on Friday, Jun. 24 and can be seen on RTSW and FSKC.
Volquez pitched 6.1 innings in his most recent start, surrendering five runs and striking out six in a 16-5 win over the Tigers. Eric Hosmer (.305, 39 Rs, 12 HRs, 44 RBIs, 4 SBs) went 1 for 4 Wednesday. Keuchel went 7.0 innings, surrendering two runs and striking out six in a 5-4 win over the Reds in his last outing. Jose Altuve (.343, 51 Rs, 12 HRs, 41 RBIs, 18 SBs) went 1 for 2 Wednesday with one run, one home run, and one RBI.
The Astros are a -120 road favorite in this matchup with a total of 8.5.
Pick - Hou
The Astros won their last game by a one-run margin. In games decided by one run, the Royals are 12-8. The Astros are 13-13 in close games this season.
The Royals managed to give up four walks in their last game. They'll have to pick it up against the Astros who are coming in with a 24-17 record against opponents who give up that many walks or more.
It looks like the Astros have a slight leg up on the Royals, as the Astros have won their last five games while the Royals have lost their last two.
When they outhit their opponents, the Royals are 31-12. The Astros have a 25-5 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 24th, Kansas City is near the bottom of the league in runs, scoring 286 this season. Houston ranks in the bottom half at 16th with 310.
Kansas City and Houston both rank in the bottom half of the league for their on-base plus slugging percentage. Kansas City sits at 17th with an OPS of .731, and Houston ranks 16th with an OPS of .734.
When the Astros allow at least one home run, they are 24-24. When the Royals allow one or more homers, they have a 23-25 record.