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2018 MLB Lines - Houston Astros Baseball Betting

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2018 Houston Astros MLB Baseball Odds

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The 2017 Houston Astros won the franchise’s first World Series, ever. Now, the team will try and be the first back-to-back winners since the 2000 New York Yankees. Even with a stacked lineup and deep pitching staff, it’s an uphill batter.

The Astros have lost their player-coach Carlos Beltran from last year. That could have an impact, but this is a team that won 101 games last year and has added Gerrit Cole to a rotation that’ll have Justin Verlander for more than a month of the regular season. By all account, the talent on the field in 2018 is even better than 2017. This team remains loaded with deep depth. The names are there. The talent is there. Now they just need health and a bit of luck.

2017 Record: 101-61

2017 Moneyline Record: +11.72 Units

2017 Over/Under Total Record: 81-72-9

Current World Series Odds: +530

Current Odds To Win AL: +254

Current Odds To Win AL West: -453

Regular Season Win Total: 97.5

2018 Houston Astros Season Outlook

It’s hard to find fault with any part of the Astros’ team. Though the weakest link in the playoffs last year was the bullpen and while the pen added a couple middle-inning arms, they’re riding with Ken Giles in the ninth.

Giles was all but abandoned in the World Series, but Houston is confident he can bounce back after a strong regular season performance. The Astros are also short on left-handed options in the pen with Tony Sipp the lone southpaw. We will see if there’s enough there come playoff time. In the meantime, additions of Joe Smith and Hector Rondon at least add depth to the pen while starters Brad Peacock and Collin McHugh are likely to work out of the pen given the depth in the starting rotation.

Speaking of that rotation, Justin Verlander is back for a full season after an impressive run through September and October last year. The 35-year old is inching closer to the end of his career, but he was a top-5 finisher in Cy Young voting each of the last two seasons. He’s a proven commodity at the top of the rotation and is joined by Dallas Keuchel, Gerrit Cole, Lance McCullers and Charlie Morton. That’s one strong five-man rotation.

If healthy, Verlander and Kuechel give the Astros dueling aces, one a righty and the other a southpaw. Then, Cole is a former ace with top of the rotation stuff. McCullers is filthy, too, and was an All-Star in 2017. Even Morton was 14-7 with a 3.62 ERA last season and proceeded to pitch well in the playoffs.

In the rotation, depth is crucial. Every team needs at least eight or nine quality starters. The Astros has that and then some with McHugh, Peacock, Francis Martes and David Paulino.

The pitching can compete with any team. The offense can, too, after scoring an MLB-leading 896-runs last season and producing a .282/.346/.478 slash line as a team. The team had a .823 OPS. The next highest team OPS was .788.

There’s no doubt this team will score runs in bunches, again. After a hamate bone surgery in February, Yulieski Gurriel will start the season on the disabled list and then will serve a suspension upon his return. With him out, Marwin Gonzalez figures to slide over to first with Derek Fisher getting at bats in left-field.

This team is stacked. They have depth for days with Jake Marisnick, Tyler White, A.J. Reed, Tony Kemp, Kyle Tuker, J.D. Davis and so many others ready to step in for any injury.

Ahead of that talent group of players is a starting lineup loaded with power and speed.

Last year’s team had 10 players with at least 250 plate appearances and an OPS+ of 109 or better. All 10 of those players are back in 2018. Of those players, eight had an OPS+ of at least 122 and five at an OPS+ of at least 134.

Of those five over 134, Jose Altuve led the way at a 164 OPS+ in route to his MVP trophy. Altuve hit .346 with a .957 OPS and produced 24 home runs, scored 112 runs and stole 32 bases.

Impressively, Altuve wasn’t the only MVP candidate on his own team. In fact, Gonzalez may have been the MVP of the team given his ability to play multiple positions. While filling in all over the diamond, he had a 149 OPS+ with a .303 average, 23 homers and team leading 90 RBIs.

Others who completely dominated include George Springer and Carlos Correa. Springer played in 140 games with a team high 34 home runs from the lead off spot. He tied Altuve for the team lead in runs scored while getting on base at a .367 clip. Correa played in only 109 games, but aside from Altuve had the best slash line at .315/.391/.550. He had 24 homers despite missing nearly two months.

This lineup is so deep, it’s easy to overlook the likes of Josh Reddick, Brian McCann and Evan Gattis, all above average sluggers.

One other key player to this offense is Alex Bregman. Bregman didn’t hit well in the first half of the year, but finished strong, batting .315 with 11 homers and a .903 OPS in the second half.

As scary as it sounds, this offense has room to grow from the numbers it put up in 2017. The pitching staff is also better—and deeper.  It’s hard to imagine a better season than the one that led to a World Series title last year, but Houston hast the ability to be even better.

MLB - Houston Astros Baseball Betting

The 2017 Houston Astros won the franchise’s first World Series, ever. Now, the team will try and be the first back-to-back winners since the 2000 New York Yankees. Even with a stacked lineup and deep pitching staff, it’s an uphill batter.

The Astros were established in 1962, when they were known as the Houston Colt .45s. A few years later, the Colt .45s changed their name to the Astros, to show support for Houston, Texas, involvement with the US space program. Originally members of the National League, the Astros moved to the American League in 2013. The Astros have only been to one World Series, in 2005, but lost to the Chicago White Sox. Since then, the Astros have fallen on tough times, but loyal fans knew all along that the Astros would establish themselves as a power once again! With a unique ballpark that has even has train tracks, Minute Maid Park is one of the nicest places in baseball.

Major League Baseball Teams

Baltimore Orioles Baltimore, Maryland Oriole Park at Camden Yards
Boston Red Sox Boston, Massachusetts Fenway Park
New York Yankees New York City, New York Yankee Stadium
Tampa Bay Rays St. Petersburg, Florida Tropicana Field
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CENTRAL Chicago White Sox Chicago, Illinois Guaranteed Rate Field
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WEST Houston Astros Houston, Texas Minute Maid Park
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Texas Rangers Arlington, Texas Globe Life Park in Arlington
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