Houston Astros at New York Yankees Pick 6/22/19
Houston Astros (48-27) at New York Yankees (46-27)
When: 7 p.m., Saturday, June 22
Where: Yankee Stadium, New York
Moneyline: HOU +150/NYY -160
Runline: Astros +1.5/Yanks -1.5
Starting Pitchers: Wade Miley (6-4, 3.30 ERA, 1.19 WHIP) vs. Masahiro Tanaka (5-5, 3.23 ERA, 1.10 WHIP)
Houston isn’t used to this. There’s nothing wrong with going into Yankee Stadium and dropping two games to New York (Zank had the winner last night). A lot of teams are going to do that against a squad that’s become one of baseball’s best. But the Astros are now on a six-game losing streak, and included in that were three defeats to the sub-.500 Reds and a 12-0 whitewashing at home against an awful Blue Jays team.
What’s going wrong for Houston? Injuries haven’t helped. For starters, George Springer remains in the minor leagues on a rehabilitation assignment, and while he’s making progress, he’s not going to return until at least next week, when the Astros return to Texas. Beyond that, the Astros just aren’t hitting. Outside of Thursday’s 10-6 loss to the Yankees, the Astros have managed only eight runs in their past five games. That’s not going to get the job done against anyone, especially a team as good as the Yankees.
Tanaka: On the Road Back?
To say that the year’s gone as planned for Masahiro Tanaka would be inaccurate, as he’s struggled to produce quality starts and has been getting saved by the Yankees’ offense for most of the season. But in his most recent start, he put everything together and tossed a two-hit shutout against Tampa Bay, going the distance and striking out 10 in his finest performance of the year. Making matters better for Tanaka is the fact that he wasn’t even on his game against Tampa Bay until getting through the first inning, suggesting that he’s got the ability to get the job done at a high level even when he’s not at his best. If that’s the case, that’s going to be huge for the Yankees moving forward.
Keeping It In The Park
That’s been the one bit of good news for Wade Miley during the Astros’ slump: he’s cut down on the home run pitches. Miley had previously surrendered a home run in eight straight starts before getting healthy off Baltimore and shutting out the Orioles on June 9. In his most recent start against Cincinnati, he didn’t allow a homer, and that’s not a small feat considering that it was in the Reds’ small park. If he can keep the ball down and keep his strikeout totals high (he’s struck out at least five in each of his past five starts), he’ll be a pretty valuable piece for the Astros as they try to get out of this funk.
The Yankees have more than proven their point against the Astros in the Bronx by taking the first two games of this four-game set. For the year, the Astros lead three games to two, and the Yankees have a chance to really make a statement by taking their third, which would be their eighth straight win and the Astros’ seventh straight loss.
- The Astros are 4-1 in Miley’s past five starts following a loss.
- The Yankees have won their past four Game 3’s of a series.
- The Yankees are 6-1 in Tanaka’s past seven Saturday starts.
- The under is 4-1 in the Astros’ past five games.
- The under is 4-1-1 in the Yankees’ past six games after allowing two runs or less in the previous game.
62 degrees and a clear night should make for a beautiful evening for baseball in the Bronx.
We’ve been here before with both of these teams, and I don’t see anything to suggest that things are changing with either side at the moment. The Astros don’t look like they’re going to bust out of this slump against the Yankees, and New York doesn’t seem likely to put a foot wrong for its part. It’s tough to keep picking against the Astros because they’re too good for this to last forever, but the reality is that they’re not hitting and the Yankees are hitting their stride.
I’m not picking against the hot team. I’m riding the Yankees until they give us a sign that their streak is over, and there’s no way that I’m picking a slumping Houston team over them right now. Give me the Yankees again.
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