FREE BLOG WEEKEND: Lancaster, weak links and more
It’s early to get restless, but as players stumble out of the gate and Bo Porter struggles to find the right combination, it’s easy to start playing Monday Morning Quarterback. Meanwhile, let’s continue the conversation with the season’s first Free Blog Weekend. Here are some conversation starters…
Lancaster fans getting their money’s worth.
- Nearly 8,000 fans (7,920) watched Mark Appel pitch and Carlos Correa, Rio Ruiz and Danry Vasquez beat Lake Elsinore 6-5 in extra innings Thursday night. So what, you say? Last April, Lancaster was playing in front of crowds of hundreds, not thousands. Yes, it pays for the Astros to have Appel, Correa and others hit all the stops along the way. Just how long they stay at those pit stops, though, is another question. When those players reach Corpus Christi, you can bet on standing room only crowds since Whataburger Field can hold under 8,000 fans.
- From time to time, we have an open house. Take the opportunity this weekend to introduce yourself, along with a little background: Where you are from, how long you’ve been an Astros’ fan, perhaps a favorite Astros’ story and how you follow your favorite nine.
- Only a few weeks ago, most fans viewed Jonathan Villar as one of the weak links on the 2014 team. You could still make the weak-link argument — especially since Villar has a higher K-rate than BA — but it’s turned out he isn’t the weakest link. By far. Robbie Grossman, Matt Dominguez, Chris Carter and even Jason Castro are hitting 50 points are more below Villar. Grossman and Castro are probably the most surprising, but Dominguez (at least from this perspective) continues to be the most concerning.
How ’bout that trade?
- The Astros made a great addition acquiring Dexter Fowler to be lead off and play center field. In a handful of games, he’s lived up to expectations. But, Jordan Lyles and Brandon Barnes are both on the Rockies’ major league roster and Lyles had that off-the-charts’ start recently, which included a 3-for-3 game at the plate. Still like the trade? Will you still like the trade in September?
In case you were wondering, the Astros…
- Lead the AL in Ks with 91.
- Are second (14) in HRs behind Chicago (15).
- Do not have a caught stealing this year (7 stolen bases).
- Have 31 RBI. Only one team (Kansas City) has fewer.
- Have no sacrifice bunts and only one sacrifice fly this season.
- Average 9+ Ks and 2.8 BBs over the first 10 games.
- Are 4-6 after 10 games, the same record as 2012 and 2013.