The Washington Nationals and Houston Astros tee it up for Game 2 of the 2019 World Series Wednesday at 8:07 p.m. ET. The Nationals took Game 1, 5-4, Tuesday night and are now 9-2 this October. Below is a breakdown of the Nationals vs. Astros sports gambling odds and lines, with MLB World Series betting tips on the moneyline, spread and Over/Under, along with suggested bets.
Nationals at Astros: Projected starting pitchers
RHP Stephen Strasburg vs. RHP Justin Verlander
Strasburg registered a 3.25 ERA/3.17 xFIP in the regular season. The right-hander was tremendous in a seven-inning performance in Game 3 of the NLCS against the St. Louis Cardinals. In 22 postseason innings, Strasburg has held opposing batters to a minuscule .568 OPS. He has fanned 33 batters while issuing just one walk.
Verlander logged a 2.58 ERA/3.18 xFIP this season. He has yielded a 3.70 ERA through four postseason starts. That playoff figure has been tamped down by a .241 BABIP. Verlander is solid at home and abroad. Current Nationals batters - as a group susceptible to Verlander's top-notch slider - hit to a .688 OPS against him.
Nationals at Astros: By the numbers
- Strasburg is a fine road pitcher. He logged a 3.23 FIP away from Nationals Park in the regular season.
- Strasburg threw 117 pitches in Game 3 of the NLCS (Oct. 14). That figure is a 2019 season-high, but during the regular season, he was solid in return outings after throwing 110-plus pitches in a game.
- Houston and Washington ranked first and third, respectively, in second-half OPS (HOU .887, WAS .832).
- The bullpen is Washington's Achilles' heel. The Nationals struggled mightily in the first half and logged a 5.27 ERA (27th in MLB) in the second half. The bullpen threw four innings in Game 1.
- Both clubs bat more right-handers than average. That plays into a slight advantage for Washington. With the starting pitchers in the game, Verlander is more susceptible to right-handed power. With the bullpens, lefty bats do a lot more damage against the Nationals.
- Tuesday's opener was a shot of confidence for some of Washington's younger players. Hits were recorded by 26-year-old SS Trea Turner, LF Juan Soto (20) and CF Victor Robles (22). Soto went 3-for-4 with three RBIs.
Nationals at Astros: Odds, picks and betting tips
Odds via BetMGM; access USA TODAY Sports' betting odds for a full list. Lines last updated at 10:30 a.m. ET.
Moneyline: The public is a few cents too respectful of Houston and a dime too respectful of Verlander. Since late-May, these two clubs have been remarkably similar with the Nationals having a tougher schedule. WASHINGTON +155 has some value.
Run line: Washington has covered the run line 57.2% of the time in 2019 (2 nd in MLB). Let's back up our moneyline play with another bet here: WASHINGTON +1.5 (-143).
Over/Under:UNDER 7.5 (-121) doesn't ring as far enough off the number or as attractive in price compared to the side.
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