The Minnesota Twins (27-26) and the Houston Astros (31-21) will begin a three-game series on Monday, May 29. First pitch from Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas is set for 4:10 p.m. ET. Sonny Gray (4-0, 1.82 ERA) will take the mound for Minnesota, while Houston counters with rookie J.P. France (1-1, 3.43 ERA).
The Astros are the -125 moneyline favorites at DraftKings Sportsbook. The Twins are a narrow +105 underdog, and the run total is set at eight.
Twins-Astros picks: Friday, May 29
Out: SP Kenta Maeda (triceps), RP Caleb Thielbar (oblique), 2B Jorge Polanco (hamstring), CF Nick Gordon (tibia)
Out: OF Michael Brantley (shoulder)
Sonny Gray vs. J.P. France
Gray will be starting his 11th game of the season. He has only allowed three or more earned runs once this season. Most recently, he pitched five innings against the San Francisco Giants and gave up two earned runs on six hits. Gray struck out six, walked two, and didn’t factor into the decision.
France will appear in his fifth game of the year. His last time out, he was coming off a brutal performance against the Chicago Cubs. He rebounded against the Milwaukee Brewers. France allowed two runs (one earned) on five hits in 5.2 innings of work. He struck out eight and walked one, but took the first loss of his career.
Outside of a six earned run day against the Cubs, France has allowed a combined two earned over his other three starts. Even though the Twins haven’t been able to capitalize on good starts from Gray, he has done a solid job of keeping opponents off the board this season.
Pick: Under 8
Despite how good Gray has been, the Twins have lost four straight games that he has started. The problem with the starter is that his pitch counts have limited how far he can last in the game. Houston has the more competitive lineup with a good chance to get not only to Gray but to the bullpen if the starter has another good outing with a high pitch count.