The 2019 World Series game 2 free pick is very much a mirror image of Tuesday’s series opener – in terms of pregame betting that is. There’s two ace pitchers on the mound again Wednesday, just like there was when Max Scherzer and Gerritt Cole got together in game 1. The line once again favors the Astros at home (HOU -185) and the total is only 1/2 a run higher than it was on Tuesday at 7.0. What will we get for results though?
Nationals Keep Finding a Way
Washington had a very nice payout at +180 in game one. This is a Nationals team that is extremely hot at the right time of year as the series opener was Dave Martinez‘ team’s 7th in a row. Washington hadn’t played in a week and was still able to plate 5 ER off of Cole, who had only allowed 1 ER the entire postseason so far. There’s reason to think that Washington could be even better in the 2019 World Series game 2 free pick now that they’ve shaken off their rust.
Washington is clicking on offense right now and that’s very evidenced by striking out only 6 times vs. Cole in 7.0 IP. This is a Houston pitcher that had struck out double digit batters in 11 of 12 starts prior. Juan Soto and Ryan Zimmerman had home runs in game 1 and the Nationals were able to score 5 runs despite Anthony Rendon going 0-4 with 4 runners LOB.
There’s a lot of pressure on starter Stephen Strasburg in game 2. This is because Max Scherzer lasted only 5 innings in game two. Although it was an impressive start with just 2 ER allowed from Scherzer, Washington still had to use 4 bullpen pitchers to close out the victory. Conversely Cole threw 7.0 and Houston taxed just 2 innings of relief from two hurlers. Make no mistake, Strasburg can answer the bell as he has 33 K’s to just 1 BB this postseason and has the 3rd lowest playoff ERA of all time at 1.64 (more than 5 starts).
Did Houston Let One Get Away?
The Astros were probably good enough to win game 1. They got off to a 2-0 lead in the 1st inning that Cy Young favorite Cole couldn’t hold on to. Houston fought back with runs in the 7th and 8th, but probably could have tied it if George Springer would’ve hustled out of the box on an 8th inning double instead of admiring what he though was a home run. Springer would have been on 3rd with 1 out, giving the Astros a chance to tie instead of being stranded.
Is Houston dejected after failing to get a win in game one or are they angry? Springer has hit a HR in his 5th straight World Series game and the Astros offense was able to work Scherzer for 112 pitches across 5 innings.
Of course the Astros also send playoff savvy veteran Justin Verlander to the mound in game 2. Verlander has been shaky this postseason though. In his last outing against the Yankees in game 3 of the ALCS, Verlander allowed 4 ER in 7 innings including serving up 2 HR. Verlander also gave up 4 to the Rays in a start during the ALDS. Both of those games were on the road though. Verlander has been better at Minute Maid Park, allowing 2 ER in 13.2 IP over 2 starts.
2019 World Series Game 2 Free Pick
There’s simply no value on Houston at a whopping -185, especially against Strasburg. Verlander has been good at home, but he’s also shown the tendency to get rocked with two outings of 4ER allowed this postseason (both on the road). The Nat’s sure look like a team of destiny right now and they have the better ROI in this one.
Pick: Washington Nationals +155