In a game that has the potential for a lot of runs, Collin McHugh (7-8, 4.73 ERA) and the Houston Astros (57-54) are in Minnesota to square off against Tyler Duffey (6-8, 6.21 ERA) and the Twins (45-66). This is the first of a four-game series at Target Field. Action begins at 8:10 p.m. ET on Monday, Aug. 8 and can be seen on RTSW and FSN.
Duffey pitched 6.0 innings in his most recent start, surrendering five runs and striking out six in a 13-5 win over the Indians. Max Kepler (.259, 39 Rs, 15 HRs, 49 RBIs, 4 SBs) continued his strong play yesterday, going 2 for 4 with one run, one RBI, and one stolen base. McHugh went 6.0 innings, surrendering three runs, striking out 10 and walking one in a 3-1 defeat to the Blue Jays in his last outing. Jose Altuve (.356, 80 Rs, 19 HRs, 67 RBIs, 25 SBs) has been successful at the plate for the Astros, going 2 for 5 yesterday with one RBI.
Houston takes on Minnesota as a -140 favorite. The Over/Under (O/U) for the matchup is sitting at nine runs. The Twins have an overall money line of -1,056 and a record as the underdog of 35-52. Minnesota has gone 6-2 in its last 10 as the underdog. The Twins have seen an uptick in scoring as of late, averaging 6.5 runs during the last 10 games compared to their season average of 4.6 runs per game. The Twins are one of the best in the MLB in terms of extra base hits with 366.
In games where it is the favorite, Houston has a 41-40 record and an overall money line of -1,050. They played poorly as the favorite over their last 10 games with a 2-5 record and a 2-8 record SU. Offensively, the Astros have really sputtered in the last 10 games. They have decreased their season average of 4.3 runs per game by averaging 2.3 during that stretch. The Astros are an excellent base stealing team with 80 stolen bases, ranking fifth in the MLB. Shifting to the pitching staff and defense, the Astros allow just 4.0 runs per game, ranking them first in the AL. The Astros have established a reputation of overwhelming hitters with an AL-best 8.7 strikeouts per game, making them one of the top five teams in the league.
The Astros lead the season series, 2-1. The Twins have a bad 14-26 record at home (30-51 overall) against right-handed starting pitchers, which is what they'll be facing when McHugh takes the mound. Duffey (RHP) will be on the hill against the Astros, who have a 42-34 record against right-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - HOU, O/U - Over
When leading after seven innings, Houston is 28-23, while Minnesota is 25-24.
The Astros are coming into this game after allowing one walk during their last outing. The Twins have a 2-15 record when opponents give up one walk or less.
When they outhit their opponents, the Twins are 32-7. The Astros have a 43-5 record when outhitting opponents.
Ranking 19th in runs, Houston has earned 483 this season. Minnesota ranks 13th with 513 runs.
Ranking 10th, Minnesota is in the top 10 of the league in walks, notching 357 this season. Houston ranks in the top five at fourth with 398.
The Twins are 38-34 in games where they hit one or more home runs. The Astros are 48-32 when they hit at least one homer.