Seattle Mariners vs. Houston Astros

MLB: 08.05 PM EST

August 9, 2018

The Seattle Mariners have dropped two in a row and will travel to southeastern Texas to take on the Houston Astros in the opener of an important four-game series on Thursday night. The AL West leaders have won two straight and seen their lead in the division swell to five games over second-place Oakland, while Seattle remains eight games back in third.

STARTING PITCHERS: Seattle LHP James Paxton (9-5, 3.51 ERA) vs. Justin Verlander (11-6, 2.19 ERA)

The series will kick off with a terrific pitching matchup, featuring a pair of starters that has each thrown a no-hitter in their career. Paxton’s came in May of this year in Toronto, a 5-0 win for the M’s in which the southpaw threw just 99 pitches to blank the Jays. Verlander has fired a pair of no-no’s in his career, most recently in 2011 for Detroit, the year in which he also won the Cy Young and MVP awards in the American League. His career resurgence in Houston has continued in 2018, with his terrific ledger only accented by a paltry 0.88 WHIP.

Vegas has recognized the strong starting pitchers on each side and set the over/under at a miniscule 6.5, an incredibly rare line given the current power hitting day and age. I’m hoping for one side to get to the opposing starter early and hopefully scratch out a couple runs and get into the bullpen early, where either of these top 10 offenses in the league (by batting average) may be able to get on a tear.

Our Free MLB Pick: Over 6.5

Connor Woods

A professional sports capper, Connor graduated from the University of Alabama and supports the Crimson Tide in addition to four major teams in Chicago: the Cubs, Bears, Blackhawks, and Bulls. One of his passions is visiting MLB stadiums - he's currently seen a game in 17 of the 30 active parks.

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