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Philadelphia Phillies vs. Houston Astros World Series Game 1 Betting Preview

Here. We. Go. After waiting four days since the end of the Championship Series, the Philadelphia Phillies and Houston Astros will be well rested as they battle it out in Game 1 of the World Series Friday night. The Astros will host this one at Minute Maid Park, with the first pitch scheduled for 8:04 pm ET.

The Phillies were able to eliminate the Padres in the last round, four games to one. In Game 5, the Phillies won 4-3 behind a mammoth home run by Bryce Harper (NLCS MVP) that gave Philadelphia the lead for good.

For Houston, they were able to continue its domination of the Yankees by sweeping them in four games, including a 6-5 win in the Bronx to end the series. Jeremy Pena was awarded the ALCS MVP after going two for four with a home run, three runs batted in, and two runs scored in the finale.

Houston is the favorite in Game 1 as they are -166 to win versus the Phillies’ +140 moneyline. Philadelphia is +1.5 (-160) on the runline, and the over/under for total runs is just 6.5.

Phillies Need A Big Start From Nola

If Philadelphia is to take Game 1, they are going to need a strong outing from starter Aaron Nola. This postseason, he is 2-1 with a 3.12 ERA and 18 strikeouts.

Nola has proven he can pitch in Houston, though. Playing in Houston for the final series of the regular season, Nola punched the Phillies’ ticket to the playoffs with a dominant performance in which he went 6.2 innings, allowing no runs on two hits and struck out nine.

Offensively, all eyes will be on slugger Bryce Harper. After missing parts of the regular season with an assortment of injuries, Harper has dominated this postseason. He is currently hitting .419/.444/.907 with five home runs and 11 runs batted in.

During the regular season, it was Kyle Schwarber who did the most damage for Philadelphia’s offense. He hit just .218/.323/.504, but he had a team-leading 46 home runs, 94 runs batted in, and 100 runs scored.

Houston Looking For Pitching Staff To Keep Up Dominant Performance

While Houston’s lineup is extremely deep, it is their pitching that might be their biggest strength. This season, they ranked a solid eighth in scoring (4.54 runs per game), but they dominated on defense, giving up just 3.17 runs per game (first overall).

At 39 years old and returning from Tommy John surgery, not too many people knew what to expect out of Justin Verlander this season. What he has delivered is a Cy Young performance, going 18-4 with a 1.75 ERA en route to a Game 1 World Series start.

On the offensive side, Jeremy Pena and Alex Bregman have been the hottest hitters on the Astros. Pena has hit .303/.324/.667 with three home runs and five runs batted in, while Bregman has hit .333/.375/.600 with two home runs and seven runs batted in.

Throw in Yordan Alvarez, Yuli Gurriel, Kyle Tucker, and Jose Altuve, and this is a lineup that can do damage one through nine.

Take Astros To Win Game 1

At 55-26, the Houston Astros dominated at home this year. It also doesn’t hurt that they have won every game they have played in this postseason and have won four out of their last five against the Phillies in Houston.

Obviously, anything can happen in the World Series but expect Justin Verlander to be on his game Friday night and push the Astros to the early series edge.

Take Houston to win at -166.

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