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Houston Astros vs. Texas Rangers - 8/31/17 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Texas Rangers (65-66) at Houston Astros (79-52)

MLB Baseball: Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 1:10 pm (Tropicana Field)

C Hamels (9-2) (3.77) vs. C McHugh (2-2) (3.63)

The Line: Houston Astros -131 / Texas Rangers +118 --- Over/Under: 8.5 See the Latest Odds

TV: FSSW, ATSW

Out at Tropicana Field on Thursday, the Texas Rangers and the Houston Astros will be finishing up their MLB series. 

In the Tuesday opener, the Rangers took a 12-2 win. On Wednesday Texas scored six times in the fourth inning on the way to an 8-1 victory. 

Houston Astros vs. Texas Rangers - 8/31/17 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

For the Thursday game, the Rangers will be bringing out LHP Cole Hamels. In his 109.2 innings and 9-2 record this year, Hamels has a 3.78 ERA with 67 Ks and 36 BBs. 

Texas has some capable hitters this year. Elvis Andrus came into Wednesday with 158 hits, 84 runs, 16 homers and 68 RBI while Shin-Soo Choo had 118 hits, 80 runs, 17 homers and 63 RBI. Choo posted a hit and a run on Wednesday; Andrus had three hits, two runs and an RBI. 

Over on the Astros’ side, they’re going with RHP Collin McHugh on Thursday. In his 39.2 innings and 2-2 record this year, McHugh has a 3.63 ERA with 39 Ks and 12 BBs. 

Houston has some big bats as well. Jose Altuve brought 176 hits, 87 runs, 20 homers and 70 RBI into Wednesday, while Yuli Gurriel had 132 hits, 59 runs, 15 homers and 62 RBI. Altuve came up with a ninth-inning single on Wednesday; Gurriel had a hit and a run. 

The Rangers are 9-3 in the last 12 Thursday games and 5-2 in their last seven during game three of a series. Texas is also 5-2 in Hamels’ last seven starts in game three of a series and 45-17 in Hamels’ last 62 starts. 

Meanwhile, the Astros are 2-10 in their last 12 games versus a left-handed starter and 0-5 in their last five Thursday games. Houston is also 5-1 in McHugh’s last six starts with five day’s rest, and 29-10 in McHugh’s last 39 home starts. 

After a solid run of starts, Hamels faltered in Oakland his last time up with six earned on nine hits in 4.1 innings. That loss broke his string of four straight victories. As for McHugh, he’s given up just one earned on nine hits over his last two starts, a span of 12.0 innings. I like the under here due to the pitching matchup, but I’ll give the winning edge to the Rangers, since Houston has simply looked lost lately. 

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