PLAYING THE PONIES

Sam Houston Race Park selections for Friday, March 6

Coady photography

Here are my selections for Friday night at Sam Houston Race Park. These are not meant to be in exact order, but merely the four horses I think have the best chance to win. For beginners, I suggest exacta boxes with three horses, using two of mine and one of your own. And you can always pick up a copy of Acing Racing 2016 to learn everything you need to know. (These are the picks and format that are available on the free tip sheet at SHRP).

FIRST
4-1-2-3
MEN OF KYLE has been off since September but will be in the mix if ready


SECOND
1-6-4-7
TELL ME U LOVE ME gets back in with maidens off a nice stakes effort


THIRD
10-1-3-7
MISTER STRANGE was no match for winner in last but catches an easier group


FOURTH
5-1-3-8
RAMBLIN FEVER was only beaten a length against slightly tougher last out


FIFTH

8-9-1-4
CHAMPAGNE'S ON ICE was not bad in meet debut; barn winning at a nice clip

SIXTH

3-2-8-6
PROSPECTOR FEVER has been tough this meet at this level


SEVENTH
5-1-2-6
MADISON'S WILD ONE lost the race at the start in last; prior was impressive


EIGHTH
1-3-6-5
EXCITING is very tough at this trip if the race stays on the grass


NINTH
5-7-2-1
SUNDANCE SEVEN might pop on the turn back in distance


TENTH
9-6-4-3

ON TILT should be a nice fit in this group shipping in from Oaklawn


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Framber Valdez was dominant on Thursday. Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images.

The Astros came into this game against the Rangers looking to take the finale of the 3-game series, and they did exactly that.

Framber Valdez had another classic performance, pitching seven innings while allowing zero runs and four hits. Valdez also recorded 8Ks and 1BB.

On offense, it was a big day for Yuli Gurriel who bounced back with 3 hits after going 0-5 the previous night. Alex Bregman and Martin Maldonado both went yard, hitting 2 and 3-run bombs respectively.

Maldonado's came in the bottom of the second inning, giving the Astros a 3-0 lead.

Bregman's put the Astros on top 5-0 in the bottom of the 5th.

The Astros added two more runs in the 7th after Bregman singled to drive in a run, and a sac fly from Aledmys Diaz.

Heading into the 8th inning, Seth Martinez took over for Valdez protecting a 7-0 lead. That lead wouldn't last long after Martinez allowed a couple of base runners and gave up 2 runs off a pair of singles from Nathaniel Lowe and Leody Taveras.

The Astros headed to the bottom of the 8th up 7-2.

After a scoreless bottom of the 8th, Rafael Montero came in to close the game out in the 9th.

Montero gave up a solo homer to Marcus Semien with 2 outs in the 9th before shutting the door.

Final: Astros 7, Rangers 3

Next up: Oakland comes to Minute Maid to play the Astros Friday night at 7:10PM.



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