Thursday, July 12 at 2:10 PM ET
Minute Maid Park
The Oakland Athletics and the Houston Astros end their four-game series on Thursday. Chad Pinder hit a three-run home run and Khris Davis added three RBI to help the A's get to Lance McCullers Jr. early and cruise to an 8-3 win over the Astros last night.
Cahill reinstated from the 10-day disabled list
Trevor Cahill (1-2, 2.77 ERA, 0.99 WHIP) will return from the disabled list after throwing four scoreless innings with Triple-A Nashville on Saturday. This will be Cahill's first start in the majors since June 2. He was enjoying success before he was injured, posting a 2.77 ERA and 0.99 WHIP with a 4.27 strikeout-to-walk ratio (K/BB) over 48 2/3 innings.
The right-hander has already been on the disabled list two times this season and on the second time the A's had as many as six starters out of action. Cahill faced the Astros on April 29, giving up four runs (three earned) on four hits (one home run) and one walk with five strikeouts and pitching last in a four-game series can be helpful.
The Athletics have scored 432 runs (10th in the majors), putting up 4.65 runs per game (10th), hitting .246 (14th) with 124 home runs (5th). Oakland ranks 16th with a 4.01 ERA, 11th with a 1.25 WHIP and 27th with 691 strikeouts. Their bullpen ranks 8th with a 3.51 ERA. Khris Davis leads the Athletics with 21 home runs and 63 RBI, Jed Lowrie has team-bests with .290 batting average, a .362 OBP and 103 hits to go along with 16 home runs and 62 RBI and Matt Olson adds 19 home runs and 46 RBI.
Morton earns win despite allowing five runs
Charlie Morton (11-2, 2.83 ERA, 1.12 WHIP) allowed five earned runs on five hits and two walks with eight strikeouts across 5 2/3 innings to earn a 12-6 win against the White Sox last Saturday. It was the first time Morton allowed more than three earned runs in a start since June 3. He has surrendered a .374 slugging percentage to hitters the third time he faces them in a game and despite the subpar outing, he still has a 2.83 ERA for the season.
The Astros have scored 481 runs (2nd in the majors), putting up 5.06 runs per game (4th), hitting .262 (3rd) with 121 home runs (7th). Houston ranks 1st with a 2.94 ERA, 1st with a 1.06 WHIP and 1st with 998 strikeouts. Their bullpen ranks 2nd with a 2.80 ERA. Alex Bregman leads the Astros with 19 home runs to go along with 59 RBI, Evan Gattis has 18 home runs and a team-best 62 RBI and George Springer adds 15 home runs and 45 RBI.
The Under is:
3-1-1 in Cahill's last five starts
5-2-2 in Cahill's last nine Thursday starts
5-1-1 in Houston's last seven games after a loss
11-4 in Morton's last 15 home starts
5-2 in Morton's last seven home starts against a team with a winning record
5-1 in Morton's last six starts when their opponent scores five runs or more in their previous game
The current Astros roster is hitting just .265 against Trevor Cahill and Charlie Morton is 4th in the American League with 11 wins, 7th with 141 strikeouts, 8th with a 2.83 ERA and 10th with 43 walks and he's 8-1 with a 2.66 ERA in 11 home starts. The Astros are averaging just three runs per game in this series and a solid pitching duel can keep the runs minimal here.
MLB Pick: Under 8 (-115) at Jazz Sportsbook
Check odds here: https://goo.gl/dVwAAb
Odds as seen on ESPN Chalk: https://goo.gl/ji6GJZ