Scott Feldman (2-2, 4.81 ERA) and James Paxton (0-2, 6.86 ERA) start in the first of a four-game series between the Houston Astros (14-7) and the Seattle Mariners (10-11) at Minute Maid Park. The Astros come into this series hoping to extend a six-game winning streak. Action begins at 8:10 p.m. ET on Thursday, Apr. 30 and can be seen on ROOT-NW and ROOT-SW.
Feldman is 5-6 with a 4.34 ERA in his appearances against the Mariners, and goes up against a below-average Seattle offense which is batting just .235 this season. Jake Marisnick (.389, 12 Rs, 2 HRs, 10 RBIs, 8 SBs) continued his strong play yesterday, going 2 for 4 with two runs, one RBI, and two stolen bases. Paxton went 4.2 innings, surrendering one, striking out seven and walking three in an 8-5 defeat to the Twins in his last outing. Nelson Cruz (.337, 14 Rs, 10 HRs, 22 RBIs, 1 SB) has been successful at the plate for the Mariners, going 2 for 4 yesterday with two runs, one home run, and one RBI.
Houston is a -116 favorite against Seattle and the Over/Under (O/U) for this game is sitting at eight runs. The Astros have an overall money line of +821 and a record as the favorite of 4-3. Houston is unbeaten as the favorite and has a 9-1 SU record in its last ten outings. The Astros have seen an uptick in scoring as of late, averaging 6.7 runs during the last 10 games compared to their season average of 4.7 runs per game. The Astros lead the MLB in home runs with 29. Houston leads the MLB in steals, swiping 28 bases. As for the pitchers, opposing offenses have been stifled by the Astros, who have a team ERA of only 3.21. The Astros are the top team in the league at limiting hits and walks to their opponents, recording a WHIP of 1.04 so far this season.
Over in the other dugout, Seattle is coming in with an overall money line of -512 and a disappointing record of 2-3 as the underdog. They have managed to pull off a perfect record over their last ten games while playing as the underdog, and have a 6-4 SU record over the same span. The Mariners have established a reputation of overwhelming hitters with an AL-best 8.2 strikeouts per game, making them one of the top five teams in the league.
The Astros lead the season series, 2-1. The Astros have a 5-2 record against left-handed starting pitchers on the year, which is what they'll be facing when Paxton takes the mound. Feldman (RHP) will be on the hill against the Mariners, who have a 7-7 record against right-handed starting pitchers.
Predictions: SU Winner - HOU, O/U - Over
The Astros sit at 10-5 against their divisional rivals, while the Mariners are 9-6.
Houston has won 70% (7-3) of its games when leading after 7 innings. However, Seattle has won all of its games (5-0) when taking a late lead.
The Astros are coming off of a weak pitching game where they recorded four strikeouts. The Mariners have a record of 2-1 when opponents' pitchers have that many strikeouts or fewer.
When they are outhit, the Mariners are 4-8. The Astros have a 2-3 record when opponents outhit them.
Ranking first in home runs, Houston has hit 29 this season. Seattle ranks eighth with 25 home runs.
Ranking 11th, Seattle is in the top half of the league in hits, notching 7.85 per game. Houston ranks in the top 10 at eighth with 8.30.
Ranking 17th, Seattle is in the bottom half of the league for its on-base plus slugging percentage (.683). Houston ranks in the top 10 at eighth with an OPS of .736.
When the Mariners allow at least one home run, they are 3-8, well-matched with the Astros who are 3-5 when allowing at least one homer.