The Seattle Mariners and Houston Astros meet on Saturday with the first pitch scheduled for 7:10 p.m. ET. The game takes place at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas and is only available on local TV or via an MLB.tv subscription. The Mariners start with Chris Flexen (7-8, 3.75 ERA) and the Astros counter with Framber Valdez (9-4, 2.74 ERA).
Seattle (54-47) has a goal of reaching the postseason for the first time in 20 years, and their activity on and off the field makes that goal look like a reality. Despite trailing 2-0 in their current series with the Astros, the Mariners are just 1.5 games behind the Toronto Blue Jays for the top wildcard spot in the American League. Seattle has a top 10 team ERA of 3.65 and just bolstered its bullpen by acquiring Luis Castillo from the Cincinnati Reds before the trade deadline. No one is clairvoyant, but it might be time to stop wondering “if” the Mariners will end their postseason drought and instead predict who they’ll be up against in the postseason.
Houston (66-35) continues to extend its lead at the top of the AL West and is now 12 games ahead of the second-placed Mariners. The Astros also have a 2-0 lead over the Mariners in their current streak, with their most recent victory coming courtesy of an 11-1 win over their AL West rivals. Justin Verlander threw just one run ball in eighth place as the All-Star secured his best 14th win of the season in MLB. Yordan Alvarez hit his 30th home run of the season, which puts him third in the league behind Aaron Judge and Kyle Schwarber.
Mariners vs Astros
pitchers: Chris Flexen vs Framber Valdez
First pitch: 7:10 p.m. ET
Local broadcast of the Mariners: ROOT SPORTS Northwest
Astro’s local show: AT&T SportsNet Southwest
Live broadcast: MLB.tv (subscription)
Odds, Tips & Predictions
running line: Astros -1.5 (+105)
totally run: 8th
Moneyline Odds: Sailors +165, Astros -195
Moneyline pick: Sailors +165
Seattle is 4-0 against a left-hander in their last four away games and as a team they have a slightly better batting average of .240 versus .233 against right-handers. The Mariners also fair slightly better against left-handers with .719 OPS compared to .699 OPS against right-handed pitchers. The odds makers have an open invitation to take the underdogs in this game and I say roll with the Mariners to claim their first win of the series.
Player prop selection: Jordan Alvarez over 1.5 bases overall (-120)
Alvarez went the distance over the Mariners on Friday and heads into Saturday with a four-game hitting streak. He’s homed across that range twice, along with a double in his back pocket. I’m confident the Astros leader in home runs in Game 3 of this series will have another successful day at the plate.
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