The Houston Astros and the Los Angeles Angels meet in game one of a four game AL West division set in MLB action from Angel Stadium on Monday.
The Houston Astros will look to build some momentum after earning a series split with the Texas Rangers following a 12-4 win in the series final on Sunday. Jose Altuve went 3 for 5 with a home run and four RBIs while Yuli Gurriel went 3 for 5 with a homer and three RBIs. Alex Bregman, Michael Brantley, Yordan Alvarez, Josh Reddick and Robinson Chirinos each added an RBI to finish off Houston's offense as a team in the win with Brantley and Chirinos each adding a double. Justin Verlander gave up two runs on four hits while striking out seven on six innings or work to get the win, improving his record to 11-4 on the year. Josh James wants to start game one and is 4-0 with a 4.91 ERA and 76 strikeouts this season. This will be James' second career start against the Angels.
The Los Angeles Angels will look to keep the momentum going after completing the three game sweep of the Seattle Mariners with a 6-3 win in the series final on Sunday. Matt Thaiss had a home run and three RBIs while Kole Calhoun added a solo home run. Andrelton Simmons and Shohei Ohtani each had an RBI to round out the Angels scoring as a team in the win while Luis Rengifo and Justin Bour each had a base hit as the Halos had six hits as a team in the winning effort. Jose Suarez gave three runs on seven hits while striking out seven over 4.1 innings of work, not factoring in the decision. Ty Buttrey got the win in relief to improve to 5-4 on the year while Hansel Robles closed the 9th for his 13th save of the season. Griffin Canning will start the opener and is 3-5 with a 4.43 ERA and 69 strikeouts this season. This will be Canning’s first career start against Houston.
Houston is 9-3 in their last 12 games overall and 5-2 in their last 7 road games while the over is 4-1 in their last 5 division games. Los Angeles is 1-4 in their last 5 games following a win and 5-0 in their last 5 series opening matchups while the under is 4-1-1 in Canning's last 6 home starts. Houston is 42-19 in the last 61 meetings between these two teams and 21-7 in the last 28 meetings between these two teams in Los Angeles.
Canning has been a much better pitcher at home than on the road, and Angels have been raking since the second half of the season started on Friday. However, the Angels releases Mike Trout on Sunday and if he can't go for the Angels here, I don't know if Los Angeles can keep up offensively here. James has been solid in a relief role lately and Houston has built up some momentum after earning a split with Texas. Add in Houston’s dominance head-to-head with the Halos, and I think you have to lean on Houston's way in the series opener on Monday.