Rays vs. Astros ALCS Game 4 | 2020 MLB Expert Analysis

Because of a minor injury, the Houston Astros were not able to use ace Zack Greinke in Game 1 of their ALCS matchup vs. the Tampa Bay Rays as they would have liked. However, Greinke will be on the mound Wednesday in Game 4. Houston is the home team from the neutral site in San Diego.

How to Bet Rays at Astros MLB Odds & TV Info

  • When: Wednesday, 8:40 PM ET
  • Where: Petco Park, San Diego
  • Probable pitchers (away/home): Tyler Glasnow/Zack Greinke
  • TV: TBS
  • Stream/gameday audio: TBS app; https://www.mlb.com/live-stream-games/
  • Opening MLB Lines: TBA

Why Bet on Tampa Bay? | 2020 MLB Expert Analysis

Combining regular season and postseason, the Rays have only lost once in their last 18 series since Aug 4, going 13-1-4 in series play.

This is the fifth time two teams have met in the League Championship Series a season after meeting in the Division Series (all occurring in the AL). In three of the other four times, the team that lost the ALDS won the next season’s ALCS. Houston beat Tampa in last year’s ALDS.

Should the Rays be worried about Nick Anderson? He was the best reliever in baseball this regular season but worked out of serious trouble to tally his first career postseason save in Game 2 of the ALCS. Anderson allowed a run on three hits and two walks in the top of the ninth inning, but he ultimately induced a game-ending bases-loaded flyout from Alex Bregman. Houston was the first team to register three hits against Anderson in a single outing in his career. After yielding only one earned run on five hits during the regular season, Anderson has yielded three earned runs on seven hits in these 2020 playoffs.

It’s Tyler Glasnow on the mound here. He pitched as the team’s opener in Game 5 of the ALDS against the Yankees last Friday night, firing 2 1/3 innings of scoreless baseball. Glasnow went one time through the Yankees lineup, allowing just a pair of walks while striking out two. The right-hander didn’t have his typical command in this one — which is to be expected for a pitcher working on only two days’ rest — throwing only 18 of his 37 pitches for strikes. Still, he did enough to get his club seven outs.

In Game 2 vs. the Yankees, Glasnow struck out 10 batters in a Rays win. He showed triple-digit fastball velocity and dropped in a number of nasty curveballs while setting a new Rays franchise record for most strikeouts in a postseason game. He did allow four earned runs on three walks and three hits, including a pair of homers by Giancarlo Stanton.

Glasnow went 5-1 with a 4.08 ERA in the regular season and is 2-0 with a 4.05 ERA in three postseason starts this year. The Rays have won each of Glasnow’s past 11 starts.

The last time Glasnow faced the Astros, he gave up four runs in the first inning en route to a loss in Game 5 of the 2019 American League Division Series. Moments after that, Glasnow acknowledged that he had been tipping his pitches,

Why Bet on Houston? | 2020 MLB Expert Analysis

The Astros have been pretty standard with their lineup the first two games: George Springer CF, Jose Altuve 2B, Michael Brantley LF, Alex Bregman 3B, Carlos Correa SS, Kyle Tucker RF, Yuli Gurriel, Aledmys Diaz DH, Martin Maldonado C. Dustin Garneau start behind the plate in Game 3 of the ALCS against the Rays on Tuesday but that’s simply to catch Jose Urquidy. It should be Maldonado back in there for Wednesday.

One bright spot of the Game 2 loss was another homer from Carlos Correa. It came on a 98.5 mph pitch, the second-fastest pitch he’s ever homered on in his career. The 26-year-old shortstop has as many home runs this postseason (five) as he did during the 2020 regular season. And his 16 career postseason homers are three more than any other player in postseason history before turning 27. Albert Pujols and Manny Ramirez each had 13 before their 27th birthdays.

Correa has upped his career postseason RBI total to 46, which are the most in club history, ranking immediately ahead of 2B Jose Altuve (36). Correa now ranks ninth in Major League history in postseason RBI and ranks second among shortstops, trailing only SS Derek Jeter (61 RBI).

It’s Zack Greinke on the bump here. Greinke yielded four runs in 4 2/3 innings last Thursday in Game 4 of the ALDS against the A’s. Greinke, who had his start pushed back by some arm soreness, gave up a three-run homer to Ramon Laureano in the second and then a solo shot to the same hitter in the fifth. He hasn’t completed five innings in any of his last three starts, and he has a 6.00 ERA between his final four regular-season starts and his two postseason starts.

Greinke felt soreness after his Sept. 29 start against Minnesota in a Wild-Card game that had been lingering. The right-hander, who turns 37 on Oct. 21, said there were no structural issues with the arm and that there were no issues last Thursday.

Expert PredictionAstros 3, Rays 2 

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