Houston hosts Baltimore following Valdez’s strong showing
Baltimore Orioles (20-44, fifth in the AL East) vs. Houston Astros (44-22, first in the AL West)
Houston; Sunday, 2 p.m. EDT
PITCHING PROBABLES: Orioles: Dylan Bundy (3-6, 4.64 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, 64 strikeouts) Astros: Wade Miley (5-3, 3.39 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 60 strikeouts)
LINE: Astros favored by 1 1/2 runs; over/under is 8 1/2 runs
BOTTOM LINE: Houston heads into the matchup fresh off a strong showing by Framber Valdez. Valdez pitched seven innings, giving up one run on five hits with seven strikeouts against Baltimore.
The Astros are 23-9 on their home turf. Houston has hit 105 home runs this season, fourth in the American League. Alex Bregman leads the team with 18, averaging one every 12.9 at-bats.
The Orioles are 12-21 in road games. Baltimore has slugged .402 this season. Trey Mancini leads the team with a .544 slugging percentage, including 31 extra-base hits and 13 home runs. The Orioles won the last meeting 4-1. Paul Fry recorded his first victory and Richie Martin went 2-for-4 with a home run and two RBIs for Baltimore. Will Harris registered his first loss for Houston.
TOP PERFORMERS: Michael Brantley leads the Astros with 78 hits and is batting .317. Robinson Chirinos is 7-for-26 with a double, four home runs and seven RBIs over the last 10 games for Houston.
Mancini leads the Orioles with 31 extra base hits and is slugging .544. Renato Nunez is 9-for-34 with three doubles, three home runs and five RBIs over the last 10 games for Baltimore.
LAST 10 GAMES: Astros: 7-3, .222 batting average, 3.73 ERA
Orioles: 3-7, .214 batting average, 4.44 ERA, outscored by 14 runs
Astros Injuries: Joe Smith: 10-day IL (achilles), Collin McHugh: 10-day IL (elbow), Lance McCullers Jr.: 10-day IL (elbow), George Springer: 10-day IL (hamstring), Aledmys Diaz: 10-day IL (hamstring), Carlos Correa: 10-day IL (rib), Jose Altuve: 10-day IL (hamstring), Max Stassi: 10-day IL (knee).
Orioles Injuries: Nate Karns: 60-day IL (forearm), Alex Cobb: 60-day IL (lumbar strain), DJ Stewart: 10-day IL (ankle), Dwight Smith Jr.: 7-day IL (concussion), Mark Trumbo: 60-day IL (knee).