Both team are coming off incredible seasons, finishing at 103-59 and 91-71, respectively. The Astros, last year’s champions, were one of three teams, including the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees to finish with 100 wins or more.
These teams are led by two of the very best pitchers in the game and we can fully expect them to face off in Game 1, with Houston putting Justin Verlander on the hill and Corey Kluber suiting up for the Tribe.
The Astros are looking to become the first team to repeat as World Series champions since the Yankees pulled off a three-peat from 1998-2000.
The regular season series was extremely close between these two teams as Houston took four of the seven games.
Here’s how these teams stack up:
- Home Runs — Astros: 205 (7th), Indians: 215 (4th)
- Batting Average — Astros: .256 (4th), Indians: .259 (2nd)
- RBIs — Astros: 763 (5th), Indians: 786: (3rd)
- Stolen Bases — Astros: 71 (11th), Indians: 132 (1st)
- Runs Allowed Per Game — Astros: 3.29 (1st), Indians: 4.02 (4th)
- Saves — Astros: 46 (tied-4th), Indians: 40 (8th)
- Earned Run Average — Astros: 3.11 (1st), Indians: 3.79 (5th)
- Total Strikeouts — Astros: 1,677 (1st), Indians: 1,536 (4th)
The No. 3 seed in the American League, the Indians were 75-87 against the spread and 76-75-11 against the total. So, if you bet on the Indians every game all year, sorry, but you lost a sizeable amount of money.
As of now, the Indians are +900 underdogs to win the World Series. There are no odds available for the first game of the ALDS or the ALDS in its entirety.
While the Indians rotation is solid, the Astros’ lineup presents a number of challenges.
Aside from Shane Bieber (4.55), each of the Indians’ starters possesses an ERA under 3.38 — with Trevor Bauer leading the pack at 2.21 across 175 innings.
The Indians are also considered a threat because the back of their bullpen is loaded with Andrew Miller, Cody Allen and closer Brad Hand, who they acquired mid-season from the San Diego Padres.
Last year’s World Series championship and this year’s 103 wins speak for themselves — Houston is an incredible ball club.
Their rotation is stacked, with Verlander and Gerrit Cole both tallying over 275 strikeouts and Charlie Morton notching 201. Dallas Keuchel wasn’t his dominant self, but he still logged more than 200 innings and is more than capable of turning up the performance in the postseason.
The Astros were 83-79 against the spread in 2018 with a 69-84-9 record against the total. At +340, the Astros are second, only behind the 107-win Red Sox as World Series favorites.
Remember, the ALDS is a short, best-of-five series. For the Indians to have a shot, they need to win the first game and have Kluber pitch two times this series.
The first two games of this series are in Houston. The Indians have great pitching, but so does Houston and I’ll take the Astros offense, too, even if the games are low scoring.
Prediction: Astros win series 3-1.
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