The Minnesota Twins look to deny the Houston Astros a seventh straight trip to the American League Championship Series as they host Houston on Tuesday with the series tied 1-1.
Houston Astros vs. Minnesota Twins (-135, 8)
Sonny Gray gets the start for the Twins and will look to continue his recent run of success, having allowed a total of seven earned runs in his last eight starts between the regular and postseason, posting a 1.37 ERA with 1.4 walks allowed per nine innings, but the team has posted a record of just 4-4 in these starts.
While the Minnesota Twins lead the league in runs per game scored since September 1 with nearly six runs per game between both regular season and postseason games, but overall this season rank just 20th in batting average and led the league in percentage of at-bats the ended in a strikeout at 26.7%.
Astros starting pitcher Cristian Javier enters having registered a 4.56 ERA with a career-low 8.5 strikeouts per nine innings this season, but seemed to find his old form in September.
Javier allowed three runs or fewer in five of his six starts in September with 11.7 strikeouts per nine innings and a 4.11 ERA, but an underlying 3.42 fielding independent.
Backing up Javier is a bullpen that ended the regular season with the sixth-best bullpen in ERA from July 1 until game 162, posting a 3.55 ERA.
Though the Astros lead the American League in runs scored since the beginning of June, Gray having allowed three earned runs or fewer in 30 of his 33 total starts this season and Javier’s strikeouts returning, a pair offenses that were hit during the weekend in Houston will cool down in Minneapolis on Tuesday.
The Play: Astros vs. Twins Under 8