Houston Astros (71-41 SU, 61-51 RL, 61-44-7 O/U) vs. Chicago White Sox (42-68 SU, 56-54 RL, 54-52-4 O/U)
MLB: Thursday, August 10, 2017 at 8:10 p.m. EST
The Line: Houston Astros -185/Chicago White Sox +155. Total: 9.5.
The Chicago White Sox and Houston Astros will conclude a three-game series when they meet again at Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago on Thursday night. Houston lost the opener on Tuesday and is now 3-7 in its last 10 contests. That result ended Chicago’s six-game losing streak.
The bats aren’t the problem
Houston third baseman Alex Bregman has on fire at the plate since July 4, going 35-for-100 with five homers, 17 RBIs, and 28 runs scored during this stretch. The 23-year-old is in the midst of a 10-game hitting streak. Bregman moved to within one game of the franchise record held by Richard Hidalgo (2000) when he recorded his ninth straight contest with an extra-base hit following his three-run triple in Tuesday’s 8-5 loss to the White Sox. Jose Altuve launched his second homer in four games, during which he has gone 8-for-17 with three RBIs and four runs scored. First baseman Yuli Gurriel, who hit a solo homer in the series opener, has multi-hit performances in four of his last five outings. Carlos Beltran has hit safely in four straight games and 12 of his last 14.
Right-hander Brad Peacock is taking the mound for Houston on Thursday. Peacock is 10-1 with a 3.20 ERA through 25 appearances (12 starts) this season. The 29-year-old’s numbers looked even better until last Friday, when he allowed seven runs on nine hits, three home runs, and two walks in six innings during a 16-7 win over Toronto. Peacock’s ERA previously stood at 2.62.
Rodon rounding into form
The White Sox snapped a six-game skid with just their fifth win in 28 contests since July 4. Catcher Kevan Smith drove in four runs in the series opener against Houston, eclipsing his combined RBI total (three) over his previous 21 games. First baseman Jose Abreu has four multi-hit efforts in his last eight contests.
Carlos Rodon will oppose Peacock on Thursday. The left-hander is 1-4 with a 4.66 ERA through seven starts since joining the rotation in late June. Rodon has improved of late, lowering his ERA from a season-high 6.29 with two consecutive quality starts. He most recently faced Boston last Friday, when he went 7.2 innings and allowed only two runs on six hits. The 24-year-old also mowed down 11 batters and walked none.
The Houston Astros are:
- 38-15 in their last 53 road games
- 7-2 in their last nine games against teams with winning percentages under .400
- 17-8 in their last 25 road games against left-handed starters
The Chicago White Sox are:
- 18-42 in their last 60 overall
- 3-11 in their last 14 home games
- 1-4 in Rodon’s starts
The Astros are mired in a minor slump, but for the most part they have succeeded on the road and have beaten up on weaker opposition. This series against Chicago satisfies both parts of the aforementioned equation. With the bats still cooking and Peacock in fine form, Houston should like its chances of getting back on track in this one. Houston is 38-15 in its last 53 on the road, 7-2 in its last nine against opponents with winning percentages under .400, 17-8 in its last 25 on the road against left-handed starters, 7-0 in Peacock’s last seven starts, and 6-0 in Peacock’s last six road starts. The White Sox are 18-42 in their last 60 overall, 3-11 in their last 14 at home, and 1-4 in Rodon’s last five starts. Look for those trends to continue.