Houston Astros (34-32) vs Tampa Bay Rays (45-22)
Tuesday, October 13, 2020 at 3:33 pm
*3 Star Play on Rays ML* The Houston Astros have found ways to lose the first two games in this series despite the fact that the Tampa Bay Rays haven't hit the baseball well at all yet.
Both Zack Greinke and Lance McCullers Jr. were tremendous for the Astros. I don't think Jose Urquidy will be that good. Urquidy had a 2.73 ERA this year, but a whopping 5.41 SIERA. All of his advanced metrics scream that he is due for regression. Urquidy isn't a bad pitcher, but he isn't particularly good either. He didn't pitch well against Oakland in his first playoff appearance.
Urquidy doesn't pitch deep into games either, and the Astros have had a multitude of bullpen injuries this year. Houston now has a middle of the road bullpen.
Tampa Bay starts Ryan Yarbrough here. It is a small sample size (49 plate appearances), but he has held the Astros to a .245 OBP. Yarbrough is 6'5 and his high release point can be tough to figure out. The Rays have arguably the deepest bullpen in baseball. They rank third in bullpen ERA this year. This is their big advantage over the Astros in this series.
Houston ranked 22nd in wOBA against lefties this year. The Astros have hit better in the playoffs thus far, but they have the much worse defense and much worse bullpen.
This is a short price here on the better team.
Take Tampa Bay.