The Minnesota Twins head to Minute Maid Park in Houston this Thursday night to open a four-game series against the Houston Astros, so we’ve prepared the best Twins vs. Astros betting pick and tips along with the odds update on MyBookie Sportsbook.
The Astros have already won a three-game series over the Twins in Minneapolis back in June, 2-1, and are 4-1 in their previous five tilts against Minnesota. Houston opened as a massive -260 fave for Thursday’s clash, while the Twins are +233 road dogs with a total of 9.0 runs.
The Twins are sitting bottom of the AL Central
The Minnesota Twins are coming off a 6-5 defeat at the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday afternoon, splitting a two-game interleague series at Great American Ball Park. They dropped to 45-63 on the season and remained the worst team in the American League Central, trailing a game and a half behind the fourth-placed Kansas City.
Minnesota owns the third-worst record in the American League, and the Twins have lost seven of their previous ten games overall. They are 6-13 since the All-Star break, posting the seventh-highest ERA in the majors (5.01), as the pitching has been an issue for the Twins all season long.
Griffin Jax will get the starting call this time around, and the 26-year-old rookie is 1-1 with a 6.41 ERA and 1.35 WHIP in three starts and four relief appearances (26.2 innings of work). Jax has struggled mightily in June, but he’s allowed just one earned run in each of his previous two starts (nine innings). Last time out, Jax tossed five frames and got a no-decision in a 5-1 defeat at the St. Louis Cardinals.
The Astros are leading the way in the American League
The Houston Astros are coming off a two-game interleague set at the Los Angeles Dodgers, and their Wednesday’s closer has been excluded from this analysis. The Stars outlasted the reigning champs in the opener this past Tuesday, 3-0, as Lance McCullers Jr. tossed 6.2 impressive innings, while three relievers finished the job.
Over the last three weeks, the Astros have registered the 15th-highest ERA in the majors (4.27), but their offense keeps the team atop of the American League. Since the All-Star break, the Astros have slashed .254/.323/.449, slugging 25 runs and 31 doubles in 16 outings.
Framber Valdez will toe the slab Thursday against the Twins, and the 27-year-old lefty is 7-2 with a nice 3.01 ERA and 1.30 WHIP in 12 starts this term. He’s had some ups and downs in July, posting a 4.05 ERA and a 31/24 K/BB ratio across 33.1 innings of work (six starts).
Valdez met the Twins on June 13 and grabbed a win, allowing a couple of runs (one earned) on five hits and three walks while striking out two through seven innings. He’s 2-0 with a 1.62 ERA in two career starts and three relief appearances against Minnesota.
- 3-7 in the last ten games overall
- 5-13 in the last 18 games on the road
- 7-3 in the last ten games overall
- 5-1 in the last six games at home
Minnesota Twins vs. Houston Astros Pick
The Astros are 4-1 ATS in their last five outings at Minute Maid Park. They own the highest-scoring offense in the majors, averaging 5.45 runs per game, so I’m expecting the Astros to torture the Twins pitching staff and win by two or more runs.
The Astros have some pitching issues, too, but their offense should make all the difference. The Twins surrender a whopping 5.33 runs per contest (28th in the MLB), while their bullpen owns the fourth-highest ERA in baseball (4.98).
The Twins ‘pen has recorded an awful 5.56 ERA over the previous two weeks. If Griffin Jax starts to struggle early, this should be a proper high-scoring affair, and the rookie righty will have a tall task to slow down the Astros, who have a .781 OPS against the right-handed starting pitchers in 2021.
On the other side, Framber Valdez has allowed a whopping 24 free passes over his last six starts, struggling with control a lot, so the Twins should score a few runs in this one. Minnesota has a strong .258/.333/.457 triple-slash over the last two weeks.