Astros: RHP Lance McCullers, the Game 7 starter in last year's World Series, is 0-3 in five career starts against Texas.
For the second season in a row, Springer started it with a home run in the team's first at bat of the season, and Verlander, for all intents and purposes, finished it by humbling the Rangers over the first six innings, shutting them out while the Astros built a 4-0 lead.
Keuchel (0-1) allowed seven hits and three runs in six innings for the defending champs, who had a five-game winning streak against Texas after taking the season opener. He gave up four hits, struck out three and walked three.
"Through the course of spring training, I've prepared well for the season", Keuchel said.
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Verlander is now 10-1 in the regular season since being acquired by the Astros from Detroit in a trade-deadline deal on August 31. The only time the Rangers ever really threatened Verlander was in his final inning of work, getting runners to first and third with two out, but that ended when he struck out Nomar Mazara to end the rally. Keuchel pitched on opening day two straight seasons before Thursday. "It seemed like he was battling the mound there a little early with the land leg, but was able to find some range there". Bregman even recorded an out on a high popup to left. Each time Gallo came to the plate, third baseman Alex Bregman moved out to left field, giving the Astros four outfielders while the remaining infielders all shifted to the right side.
Thanks to Springer, the Astros led the start.
Astros: 1B Yuli Gurriel is recovering from left hand surgery last month, but started the season on baseball's restricted list to serve his five-game suspension - for making an inappropriate gesture toward Dodgers pitcher Yu Darvish in the World Series - rather than on the disabled list.
Astros manager A.J. Hinch said he never got clarification on what the Rangers were looking for on the review of Odor's errant throw in the sixth.
Rangers: Lefty starter Martin Perez (recovering from right elbow surgery) and right-handed reliever Tony Barnette (lower back strain) pitched in an intrasquad game at Triple-A Round Rock on Friday night.