A quick look at losing Will Harris

The latest Astro free agent pitcher to sign elsewhere (joining Gerrit Cole and Wade Miley) was Will Harris, who signed a 3 year / $24 MM contract with the World Champion (it hurts to type this) Washington Nationals. This transaction feels so unusual because in Games 6 and 7 of the World Series, Harris gave up two-run home runs in the 7th inning of both games against these same Nats. The Game 6 homer to Anthony Rendon helped extend a tenuous 3-2 lead to a safer 5-2 margin, while the Game 7 homer flipped a 2-1 Astros lead to a 3-2 deficit a few outs short of the Astros second championship. Of course, the Nationals did get to see Harris pitch effectively in Games 1, 3 and 4 of the series.

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Is Lance McCullers Jr. the most critical cog entering 2020?

The last time Lance McCullers pitched for the Astros was game 4 of the 2018 ALCS against the Red Sox. The last time Lance McCullers pitched uninjured for the Astros was probably in early July of 2018. He had a 10-3 record and a 3.41 ERA and then gave up 14 runs in his next 13.2 innings before being shut down for most of August and September. He came back and pitched out of the bullpen for the final week of the season and through the playoffs and then underwent Tommy John surgery immediately after the season.

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The Astros and their finest hour

In the movie Apollo 13 there is a special moment when things are looking grim for the three astronauts and the crippled spaceship that the crew and the support staff on the ground are all trying to baby back to Earth. The director of NASA says, “This could be the worst disaster NASA’s ever experienced.” At this Flight Director Gene Kranz replies, “With all due respect sir, I believe this will be our finest hour.” And it was.

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