White Sox vs. Astros prediction and odds for Opening Day

Mar 24, 2023; Mesa, Arizona, USA;  Chicago White Sox starting pitcher Dylan Cease (84) throws in the
Mar 24, 2023; Mesa, Arizona, USA; Chicago White Sox starting pitcher Dylan Cease (84) throws in the / Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Two of the most talented rosters in the bigs open up their season against one another.

The White Sox will look for a bounce back campaign in 2023 after missing the postseason, but have a stiff test against the defending World Series champions Houston Astros on the road.

Dylan Cease will take the mound for the South Siders against Houston, who will counter with lefty and newly minted ace Framber Valdez.

Here are the odds for Thursday's Opening Day matchup:

White Sox vs. Astros odds, run line and total

White Sox vs. Astros prediction and pick

Cease was a monster last season, posting a 2.20 ERA, finishing second behind former Astros ace Justin Verlander in Cy Young voting. However, where the White Sox pitcher struggled was with walks. He led the big leagues in walks last season with 78 and while the Astros are potent hitting team, they don't walk all that much. Houston was 23rd in walks last season.

It's a new season, but it's clear that the Astros try to put the ball in play and rely on its stud hitters such as Yordan Alvarez and Kyle Tucker, and former White Sox MVP Jose Abreu to make plays at the plate.

I think Cease is in line for a big outing with his usual big strikeout numbers, but Valdez should be in control on the mound for the Astros. The White Sox offense has gone through some transitions with Abreu heading to Houston and I believe new manager Padro Grifol will need to tinker with the lineup early on.

Given that Valdez is coming off a career year and the White Sox were middling against lefties last season (17th in on-base percentage las tseason), I believe we see a low scoring opening game.

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.