2020 MLB Playoffs: Astros vs. Rays odds, picks, ALCS Game 2 predictions from proven model

The Tampa Bay Rays and the Houston Astros take the field in Game 2 of the 2020 American League Championship Series on Monday afternoon. The Rays lead this 2020 MLB Playoffs series after a 2-1 victory in Game 1. Lance McCullers is scheduled to start for Houston, with Charlie Morton, who played for the Astros from 2017-18, on the mound for Tampa Bay. First pitch is at 4:07 p.m. ET in San Diego. 

William Hill lists Tampa Bay as the -130 favorite, up from opening at -125. The over-under for total runs expected is set at eight in the latest Astros vs. Rays odds. Before making any Rays vs. Astros picks, check out the latest MLB predictions from the SportsLine Projection Model.

This model, which simulates every pitch 10,000 times, returned more than $1,400 on its top-rated MLB money-line and run-line picks in 2019, and anyone who followed it saw huge rewards. It’s off to a profitable start in the 2020 MLB Playoffs, including hitting all three top-rated money-line MLB picks during the first week of the postseason.

Now, the model has dialed in on Astros vs. Rays. You can visit SportsLine now to see the picks. Here are the MLB odds from William Hill and trends for Rays vs. Astros:

  • Astros vs. Rays money line: Rays -130, Astros +110
  • Astros vs. Rays over-under: 8 runs
  • Astros vs. Rays spread: Rays -1.5
  • HOU: The Astros are 5-2 in their last seven games
  • TBA: The Rays are 10-2 in their last 12 games

Why you should back the Astros

Houston will send a talented pitcher to the mound in Game 2, with McCullers deploying an interesting skill set. The right-hander posted the second-highest ground-ball rate in the American League this season at 59.7 percent, and he was dynamite against left-handed hitters, allowing only a .190 batting average. McCullers was also effective overall, ranking in the top 20 of the American League with a 3.93 ERA.

Offensively, the Astros have been much better in the playoffs than the regular season, and Houston does excel in a few specific areas. The Astros had the lowest strikeout rate in baseball during the regular season at 19.7 percent, and Houston was a top-eight team in both doubles and triples. George Springer headlines a lineup full of big names, with the three-time All-Star outfielder hitting 14 home runs and boasting a .540 slugging percentage in 2020.

Why you should back the Rays

The Rays are a balanced, talented team that won at a high level during the regular season. Tampa Bay’s offense was strong, but it has been pitching and defense leading the way for the Rays. The Rays finished No. 1 in MLB in bullpen wins above replacement this season, ranking third in bullpen ERA (3.37) and second in avoiding walks, giving out only 2.9 free passes per nine innings. 

In addition, Tampa Bay is an impressive fielding team, ranking in the top 10 in fielding percentage, ultimate zone rating and defensive runs saved this season. The Rays did hit 80 home runs and score 289 runs, but they also played small-ball effectively, ranking sixth in MLB with 48 stolen bases and fourth in walk rate at 10.7 percent. 

How to make Astros vs. Rays picks

SportsLine’s model is leaning over on the total with the simulations calling for 8.5 combined runs. The model also says one side of the money line has all the value. Head to SportsLine now to see the pick. 

So who wins Rays vs. Astros? And which side of the money line has all the value? Visit SportsLine now to see which side to jump on, all from the advanced model that returned over $1,400 on MLB picks last year and got off to a profitable start in the 2020 MLB Playoffs.

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