• Astros vs. White Sox on Opening Day
• Thursday, March 30 at 7:05 PM ET
• Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas
After winning the World Series last season, what do the Houston Astros have in store for the 2023 campaign? That’s what people can’t wait to find out, as the reigning champs are fired up to get things going on Thursday against Chicago. Ahead of Game 1 this week, the Astros are favored to beat the White Sox on MLB’s Opening Day, as Minute Maid should be rocking for this one. Will they come out on top?
That’s what a lot of people think will go down, as the Astros are going to want to make a statement in this one. The Astros are one of the best teams we’ve seen in recent years, and they’ve got their multiple title rings to back that up. The White Sox are loaded with young talent, but not a lot of people think they have what it takes to record an upset in this one. For manager Dusty Baker, he’s got full belief in these guys.
|Opening Day odds|
|Astros to win||-165||-165||-165||-165|
|White Sox to win||+150||+150||+150||+150|
|Over to hit||-110||-110||-110||-110|
|Under to hit||-110||-110||-110||-110|
While Justin Verlander has left Houston to play for the New York Mets, the Astros’ starting rotation is still quite stacked. On Opening Day, Baker has decided to roll with left-handed pitcher Framber Valdez. Last season, Valdez was fantastic, posting a 17-6 record and a 2.82 ERA. Valdez has what it takes to make life difficult for Chicago on Thursday, which a lot of fans are expecting to see.
According to the best-rated sportsbooks, which includes the reliable Bovada review, Houston holds -165 MLB betting odds to take down Chicago, while the White Sox have been listed at +150. The White Sox will send out Dylan Cease to try and limit the Houston offense, but we don’t think there’s a strong chance that he’ll be able to silence their top bats. Because of this, we’re going with Houston as our pick.
Tonight’s office. pic.twitter.com/NFeerIWWbd
— Houston Astros (@astros) March 27, 2023
The White Sox vs. Astros opener should be a low-scoring affair
While both of these offenses are stacked, the White Sox vs. Astros opener should be a low-scoring affair. That’s because the Cease vs. Valdez matchup is easily one of the best pitching matchups that we’re going to see on the first day. Cease himself has turned a lot of heads with his strong play, which included a season to remember. Last year, Cease went 14-8, with an eye-opening 2.20 ERA.
Cease was so good last year, he nearly took home AL Cy Young honors. He finished in second place, right behind Justin Verlander. Still, Cease put himself on the map and he’s hoping for another big year this season. Cease is going to have a great chance to make people believe in him and this team, as a strong showing vs. the Astros would be amazing to see. Will it happen?
— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) March 24, 2023
“I’m very pleased with where I’m at,” Cease said via MLB.com after a spring training start. “I think the last couple of starts, I’ve shown spurts of kind of where I am, and then I’m starting to do it more consistently. I expect to continue to climb or stay at least here. I’m pleased with where I’m at.”
Valdez is no stranger to recording great performances, as he was electric in the postseason. Per the oddsmakers, the over/under for runs has been set at 6.5, with -110 odds for both. While Chicago and Houston have sluggers ready to record big hits in this one, we think that both Cease and Valdez will be in control from the first inning. Because of this, we’re going with the under as our pick here.
The Astros hold the top World Series odds
Leading up to Game 1 arriving for Houston, the Astros hold the top World Series odds, as they’re ready to try and go back-to-back. As things stand, the Astros and Yankees figure to be the top teams to come out of the American League, but teams in the National League are ready to make a splash as well. The Dodgers and Mets are looking extremely competitive and they want to try and win it all as well.
However, no matter how good other clubs look, the Astros will remain the top dogs no matter what, as they’re the top contenders. Baker is back as manager and his experience alone helps the team stand out. It also helps that you have players like Valdez, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Yordan Alvarez and more. Alvarez was a beast at the plate last year, which included his unforgettable walk-off homer vs. the Mariners in the postseason. Everyone can’t wait to see what he does in 2023.
A lot of baseball fans are hoping for the Yankees and Astros to face off in the ALCS, as it would be an incredible battle. Houston enters the new campaign with its +600 World Series betting odds, top of everyone out there. The Yankees, Mets, Dodgers and others will want to ruin their dreams, but that won’t be easy to do either. From Opening Day to the end of the year, the Astros are going to be a team to watch. Don’t be surprised when they lift the trophy once again next November.