The Seattle Mariners haven't had it easy as they gear up for the fourth contest of a seven-game road trip to open the 2020 MLB season against the Houston Astros on Monday.
Despite a highly publicized sign-stealing scandal, Houston hasn't wavered much thus far, outscoring Seattle 15-4 in two prior victories. However, the Mariners bounced back with a 7-6 win on Sunday, and hope to notch the equalizer to end this series.
Read on for abe Insights' betting preview, which features a breakdown of where the majority of action on wagers is bound to go, along with the best odds available and advanced statistics that could well decide who takes this series.
Date: Monday, July 27
Time: 7:10 p.m. ET
TV: ROOT Sports Northwest; AT&T SportsNet Southwest
Implied Probabilities: Mariners 32%; Astros 70%
Spread: SEA +1.5 (+110); HOU -1.5 (-118)
Moneyline: SEA +215; HOU -230
The reigning AL champions can hang their hat on a talented lineup, but the injury to pitching ace Justin Verlander is going to challenge Houston manager Dusty Baker in his handling of the rotation. Baker is giving the ball to Josh James on Monday, who's made only four starts in 55 prior big-league appearances.
Seattle is only adding to the uncertainty on the mound for this matchup, deploying Kendall Graveman in his first start since recovering from Tommy John surgery. Talk about a welcome back, facing one of the most star-studded lineups in the sport.
40.8 vs. 16.4: This shows the massive gap in batting WAR from 2019, a category the Astros led MLB in. The Mariners were ranked 18th and just don't have the depth or explosiveness to their batting order to match Houston.
10.1 vs. 9.5: Among the reasons why the Astros were so strong on offense was their league-leading percentage in drawing walks. Good news for Seattle is it ranked in the top five here, showing it could make up some ground by drawing bases on balls.
25.5 vs. 18.2: One area where the Mariners do have a higher number isn't a desirable one. They were fourth in strikeout percentage last year, whereas Houston had the lowest K rate among all 30 clubs.
Prior to Sunday's win, Seattle had lost 20 of 21 to Houston dating back to last season. That's too much domination on one side to ignore as part of the analysis for Monday's game.
Also consider the Astros have had two World Series appearances and a championship in the past three years, while the Mariners haven't made the playoffs since 2001. There's a ton of history beyond the basic and advanced data to suggest this could be a blowout.
This is an extremely young, inexperienced Seattle team, and facing a core with multiple All-Stars and depth doesn't seem to make for a successful concoction of factors. Nevertheless, the Mariners could find ignorance to be bliss and ride the momentum of Sunday's late rally into a surprising evening of the series.
But there's a reason Houston is still so heavily favored despite the loss. The Astros just won 107 games and seem to have a healthy chip on their shoulder about the sign-stealing controversy, eager to prove they rightfully belong among MLB's elite.
It's pretty straightforward here: any logical bettor is going to hedge with the Mariners' moneyline since it pays out better than 2-to-1. Getting Houston's -1.5 run line at around even money as of this writing is definitely a strong bargain.
Data from TeamRankings.com, shows how Seattle's games from 2019 hit the Over third-most often. Meanwhile, the Astros were No. 7 in terms of hitting the Under. The Mariners are the more extreme instance, and due to the uncertainty about starting pitching, look for wagers to skew to the Over 9.5.
Note: Odds current as of 1:25 p.m. ET on Monday, July 27.
Back to top