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Verlander, Tucker Among Player Prop Bet Locks for Astros


We are a week away from the start of the Major League Baseball season, and after enduring a 4-13 Texans season, and living through the fun but chock-full-of-losses Rockets rebuild, it will be nice to have Astros baseball back in our lives. Optimism among Astro fans is slightly tempered, presumably based on the injury to Lance McCullers and the loss of Carlos Correa on free agency.

Still, a majority of Astro fans would bet the OVER on the 91.5 win total posted on the odds boards throughout Las Vegas:

Me? I would stay away from the 91.5 win total. I don’t have a strong feeling on it one way or the other, but I DO have some strong feelings on the player prop  bets for the upcoming season. Here are all the numbers for the Astros, courtesy of

Total HR’s in the 2022 Regular Season
Yordan Alvarez 37
Kyle Tucker 31.5
Jose Altuve 27.5
Alex Bregman 24.5
Yuli Gurriel 17.5 –
Michael Brantley 12.5 –

Total RBI’s in the 2022 Regular Season
Yordan Alvarez 112.5
Kyle Tucker 102.5
Alex Bregman 87.5
Jose Altuve 75.5
Yuli Gurriel 75.5
Michael Brantley 57.5

Total Wins in the 2022 Regular Season
Justin Verlander 12.5
Framber Valdez 12
Luis Garcia 10.5

Total Saves in the 2022 Regular Season
Ryan Pressly 28.5

Here are six bets that I love:

Michael Brantley – Total HR’s – UNDER 12.5
Let me be very clear, I love having Michael Brantley on this team. I was ecstatic the day that he appeared to reverse course and sign with the Astros after flirting with the Blue Jays before the 2021 season. I think he can probably hit .300 till he is 40 years old. He’s a professional hitter. We all love Michael Brantley. That said, he’s never been a huge power hitter, and now he is entering his age 35 season. Brantley also typically misses at least one big chunk of the season with injury, and I will bank on that happening at some point. On top of that, Brantley didn’t hit a home run last season once the calendar flipped to September. That includes the postseason. I will bank on the power numbers continuing to decline with Brantley.

Yuli Gurriel – Total HR’s – OVER 17.5
Yuli Gurriel – Total RBI’s – OVER 75.5

Yuli Gurriel was one of the most underrated players in baseball last season, winning the American League batting title with a .319 batting average. Now, he finds himself in a contract year, and knowing that, he reportedly came into camp in great shape by cutting out pizza and soda. I freaking LOVE pizza, so I feel acutely the level of commitment that Yuli is demonstrating heading into this very important season in the twilight of his career. So let’s bet on some very attainable OVER bets.

Kyle Tucker – Total HR’s – OVER 31.5
Kyle Tucker – Total RBI’s – OVER 102.5

Tucker had one of the stranger seasons last year of any good to great player. HIs splits indicate a player who really struggled early in the year, and then got into a groove over the course of the second half. To wit, his April OPS was .610, and then he never had a month with an OPS below .893. In September and October, his OPS was 1.130. There was a 200 point delta between his first half and second half OPS. Those are the numbers. In actuality, Tucker made great contact all season long and just had horrendous luck early in the season. I am going to bank on Tucker’s full season luck regressing to the mean, and the continued upward trajectory of a young player to take the OVER on his two power numbers.

Justin Verlander – Total Wins – OVER 12.5
I realize that spring training is a small sample size, and this year it’s even smaller than usual, but Verlander looks fantastic. If he gets 30 starts this season, he is going to get at least 13 wins with this team’s offense backing him. My only concern is that, during the load management phase of the season for Verlander, maybe he has  a handful of early season starts where his pitch count prevents him from getting the necessary five innings to get a win in the box score. I’ll take my chances.

Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. weekdays. Also, follow him on Twitter at and like him on Facebook at

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