Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#6961 Houston Astros vs.
#6962 New York Yankees
Friday, June 24, 2022 at 7:05pm EDT
Written by Jordy

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The much-anticipated four-game series between the Houston Astros and New York Yankees continues on Friday night. A dramatic ninth-inning comeback left the Astros stunned and the Yankees the victor in Thursday’s opener. It was one of the toughest regular-season losses you’ll ever see. The Yankees will try to keep the momentum going in the rematch with the Astros starting veteran pitcher Justin Verlander on the mound opposite of New York’s Luis Severino.

Astros blow it late

What a heartbreaking loss for the Astros.

They were on the verge of handing the Yankees a series-opening loss until they completely blew a three-run lead in the ninth inning. It was a reminder that the Yankees have too much batting power to ever count out in games.

There’s no room for comfort in these head-to-head meetings.

The herculean task of keeping the Yankees’ bats from crushing the Astros now falls on the shoulders of Justin Verlander. Despite turning 39 years old in February, the longtime veteran has yet to succumb to the demands of Father Time. He has thrown with speed and control en route to a 2.30 ERA, 0.89 WHIP and 8-3 record on the season.

But the Yankees’ bats can turn even the best stats upside down. The biggest question mark will be the Astros’ ability to endure another offensive shootout. They cashed in big with a pair of three-run homers from Alex Bregman and Yordan Alvarez in the first meeting. So there’s no certainty they’ll get that sort of boost again in Friday’s rematch.

Big bats come through for the Yankees

The lights were brightest in the bottom of the ninth inning, and Aaron Judge slammed the single liner to put the Yankees over the Astros and steal the opener. This is the year where potential is becoming reality for New York.

Granted, things did get a bit too close for comfort against an Astros team that was suddenly hitting the ball well again. The good news for the Yankees is the Astros haven’t shown they can consistently perform that well offensively. Even if they do have another high-scoring game, the Yankees have already shown they can match them blow-for-blow on the scoreboard.

New York leads the league in average home runs and RBIs. A snap of a finger and things could go bad in a hurry for the struggling Astros. Luis Severino knows all about bad after his letdown performance against the Toronto Blue Jays.

But he can clearly look to bounce back with a win over the Astros. The 28-year-old righty is throwing a 3.27 ERA with a 4-1 record on the season.

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The Astros showed enough fight in the opener to prove they aren’t getting swept in this series. Friday’s game seems like the best opportunity to steal a win with Justin Verlander on the mound. Nothing about facing this ridiculous Yankees batting lineup will come easy.

However, despite the batting struggles, the Astros did show in the opener they’re capable of playing up to the herculean challenge to topple the Yankees on the road. If not for a magical rally, the Astros were well on their way to winning the opener.

Verlander is actually doing his best work on the mound this season when he’s throwing on the road—2.15 ERA and a 1.61 opponent batting average. The Astros are one of those rare teams capable of matching the Yankees on the mound. Along with elite starting talent, they have a bullpen with the best ERA in the league.

A low-scoring performance from both teams will end in Houston’s favor in this game.

Prediction: Houston Astros (+105)

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Things got unexpectedly fiery on offense in Thursday’s series opener, but you can count on both teams reining things back in on Friday. The ageless wonder, Justin Verlander, has been incredible pitching on the road, and Luis Severino will be out for a big showing after losing to the Toronto Blue Jays.

This is essentially a meeting between two of the league’s top-three run-scoring defenses. Houston’s struggling offense will come back down to Earth in this meeting, and the Yankees won’t be far behind. Give me the under in this one.

Prediction: Under (7.5)
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Written By Jordy McElroy , "Jordy"

Born in Germany and raised in the beautiful state of Tennessee, Jordy McElroy is a storyteller of sports, a sports betting enthusiast, and a semi-deep thinker. Being a New England Patriots fan means he's a six-time Super Bowl winner as well, which means you'd have to be a fool to ignore his advice. Prior to joining our team here at Winners & Whiners, Jordy’s work appeared on CNN.com, FOX Sports, Bleacher Report, USA TODAY, and BJPenn.com. There are no beaches where he comes from -- just rolling hills, green valleys, and all the Sun Drop you can drink.