CHIPALATTA

All Things Astros and a whole lot more

Every pitcher is Cy Young, every batter Ted Williams


Wow, this has been a tough trip. And it ain’t over yet.

The only game where the Astros scored more than 4 runs was a 9-12 loss to the Rangers. The rest of the losses have all been by one or two runs.

Yep, it seems like every opposing pitcher is Cy Young. Now, if we’re talking about Sonny Grey I can live with that. He’s basically been Cy this season. He’s certainly a contender to take home the Cy hardware. But Nick Martinez and the Rangers’ not-ready-for-prime-time bullpen have no business holding the Astros’ offense to to three runs.

And between Scott Kazmir suffering from unearned runs and Collin McHugh getting ruined by two crappy walks — apparently when our hitters walk they don’t get to score — and Dallas Keuchel getting out dueled, this road trip has stunk.

If you think the Astros have it tough, imagine being the Angels of Some SoCal Suburb. You’re facing Chris Sale — tough enough — and all the White Sox hitters are treating Matt Shoemaker like a batting practice pitcher. Baltimore seemed to be loaded with Ted Williams clones on Saturday, collecting a total of 11 hits — 7 off Garrett Richards — to roll over the Halos. And during this dreadful stretch for the Astros, LAA made Carlos Carrasco look unhittable. Because he practically was in a 2-0 Indians win.

And that’s how it goes.

The Astros are on a rough road trip. They could go 1-8 or 3-6 … or 2-7 … and it won’t matter because the Angels have been having trouble winning at home … and now they are on a road trip with two more at the ChiSox and four games in Kansas City. Where the Royals are 20 games over .500 at home.

This trip ends, and Houston goes home for 10 games vs. the Tigers, Rays and Dodgers.

Some thinking thoughts:

1. There’s a lot of season left. For better or for worse. But right now, no matter how bad things look, the Astros are in first place. Do you remind yourself of that when things look bleak?

2. The top AL Rookie in OPS right now is Carlos Correa. Yep, that .906 makes him not only one of the best rookies, but one of the best players. Should the Astros have brought him up earlier to help win more games in April and May? Even if it meant losing a year of control?

3. Kazmir, Mike Fiers and Carlos Gomez are all quality pickups. If we look at what they replace, are the trio (troika?) along with Jed Lowrie enough to eventually help put the Astros over the top for the season?

4. We’re not far from September 1. If the 40-man roster wasn’t holding you back (we can always DFA Jonathan Villar or Robbie Grossman), who would you bring up with the hope they can contribute? Colin Moran, anyone? Tyler White?

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About BrianT

Brian Todd is a freelance writer working and living in Rochester, Minn.

115 comments on “Every pitcher is Cy Young, every batter Ted Williams

  1. Dan P
    August 11, 2015

    Brian – any chance we could bring up some of those Pearland Little Leaguers? Those kids know how to hit.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dan P
      August 11, 2015

      I know I know we would lose team control when they turn 18….

      Like

  2. Becky
    August 11, 2015

    And…….we lose again😠😠😠

    Like

  3. 1oldpro
    August 12, 2015

    When Kazmir is pitching to Conger, it is the worst fielding battery in the history of the Astros. easily.

    Liked by 2 people

    • BrianT
      August 12, 2015

      It’s rough to watch. It’s like our offense goes on holiday when the Astros hit the road.

      Like

    • Becky
      August 12, 2015

      You know Kazmir would rather have Castro catch him, but facing a lefty….Hinch wants Conger to hit. Worst catcher ever.

      Like

      • Billy Castillo
        August 12, 2015

        Yeah he’s pretty bad.

        Former first round pick, eh?

        Like

      • Tim
        August 12, 2015

        I am baffled by Conger. He has had success in the past throwing out baserunners, but he looks absolutely horrible this year. He isn’t even close. What has caused this sudden regression?

        Like

  4. astrocolt45
    August 12, 2015

    It has been said that good pitching defeats good hitting. Last night good pitching defeated terrible hitting. But that 85 mph curveball was worse than nasty. When Tucker took the called 3rd strike by leaving back from what he thought was an inside pitch and it was all the way over to the outside of the plate – that “wrote a book” on how effective MadBum was with the curve.

    Like

    • astrocolt45
      August 12, 2015

      1. Yes, but I would like to be in 1st on October 4th. 2. Nah, we needed to see what Villar could do and now we know. 3. It could happen if the Rangers and Angels continue to struggle, but I don’t see much hope in any playoff games. 4. If I had my way, White would be playing 1st today. Not sure Moran is needed at 3rd. 5. This Fall and Winter are going to make JL earn his money. He has to DFA some guys that we think are AAA players but may move to another organization and do well.

      Like

  5. daveb
    August 12, 2015

    You have to wonder if Conger has an arm problem. Either that, or he’s developed one of the mental hitches in his ability to throw.

    Heck, I’d bring White in for Friday night. After his 2-4 last night, he’s hitting .366 with a .463 OBP. Are we assuming that everyone will start hitting as soon as they get home? Carter looked like a beaten man walking back to the dugout after one at bat last night. And are we doing Jake a disservice by still send him out there? He’s obviously not working his way out of his three and a half month slump.

    A little nod to my pal Joe Sclafani. Over the weekend, playing part time all along, he finally got his average back up over .300. Course he’s been sitting since. Hang in Joe. Better days ahead with a new organization.

    Like

  6. daveb
    August 12, 2015

    At this point, I’d almost have Gattis catch when the other guys are throwing a lefty at us. That’s how bad Conger has gotten.

    Like

    • astrocolt45
      August 12, 2015

      My best guess in the past was to go to the game 1 hour early and watch the defense warm up. With both catchers throwing to the bases you can compare easily if someone is throwing “rainbows.” I don’t know how the Astros work the pre-game. If someone attends a game, please let us know if there is a visible difference in the throwing of Conger and Castro.

      Like

  7. Tim
    August 12, 2015

    My hope is, in about 6 weeks, the Astros are playing winning baseball, Springer is back on the team and we look back at this stretch as a growing point in the season. The one saving grace is that every team in our division, heck, every team in the A.L. has flaws, including our Astros. We could just win this division by default because no one else wants to take it. At least that is my hope.

    Like

  8. Dan P
    August 12, 2015

    The Conger situation is weird. From 2012 – 2014 he threw out around 24-25% of base stealers. Not great but just below league average. I have not seen him in pre-game, but I have seen both him and Castro this season live at the game. Castro gets rid of it quicker and it is a hard throw. Conger seems to be putting a lot of effort into getting rid of it and when he does, it has little zip, kind of an arc going out there. He throws like somebody who might be hurting.Of course it could be technique too. Maybe his mechanics are off and he is trying too hard, tensing up and not getting off a natural throw.
    There have been a few steals lately where Johnny Bench holding a bazooka would have no chance throwing the guys out. I will say this – if I were going up against the Astros when Conger is catching, I would send everybody.

    Like

    • SargeH
      August 12, 2015

      It would seem, at least to me, that Hinch, being a former catcher himself, would take a greater interest in the catching position and would tutor them.

      Like

    • Steven
      August 12, 2015

      I think it was Sutcliffe on ESPN a few weeks ago that was breaking down his throwing. The complaint was that he is an expert pitch framer – as recognized even by the national broadcast staff – but even tries to hard to pitch frame when he is being ran on, resulting in him coming out of the crouch way to late and messing up his throwing mechanics. It’s one poison for another I guess. I don’t know what the difference between him and Castro are statistically in called balls and strikes (non swinging type), but I bet the Astros do.

      Like

  9. Devin_
    August 12, 2015

    They have been in these losses despite a complete absence of offense. Weather the storm and ride the coming crest.

    1. Being a winning team makes me feel so much better about them. Being a first place team makes me eat my words – I really didn’t think they could be so competitive this season.
    2. I feel pretty good about his time at AA and AAA. The mistake was not promoting him to AA in 2014. They couldn’t have anticipated a freak injury, but he was ready before it happened. Also, I really don’t think Villar cost us more than a game or two over those first two months despite the errors and bone headed decisions. You can’t bank extra runs from wins, so letting Correa follow the development curve was worth it.
    3. The talent is there. I question the approach and coaching right now.
    4. Yes, bring them up. Why would you pinch hit for your DH with Marwin Gonzalez in the 8th inning when a real hitter is available? It’s not like the milb guys are busy after the first week of Sept…

    Like

    • daveb
      August 12, 2015

      Questioning the coaching is what happens during losing streaks. And when a team is winning, the players get the credit.

      Like

      • Devin_
        August 12, 2015

        That’s fair. When a hitter swings through a fastball, I don’t blame the coach. When every hitter is watching hittable pitches and swinging at breaking stuff out of the zone, I put the blame on their attentiveness and preparation. I put those two on the coaching staff when it is a team trait for an extended period (losing streak).

        Like

  10. Kevin
    August 12, 2015

    First time i have turned an Astro game off after 6 innings this year. I’m sure its just me but when i see a lineup with Gattis. JFSM, and Crater , it’s over. That’s almost a guaranteed 9 outs right there. I am really clueless on thought process on these daily lineups. Thios mix and matching is sinking the ship. Carter should be long gone, JFSM defesive sub only, Gattis working for a lumber company, call up a IB,
    Lowrie at 3B val and margo backups

    Liked by 1 person

    • astrocolt45
      August 12, 2015

      I just want to add that IF they think it is pressure on the road, there is only one game left on this trip. Then they have to come home and sweep the Tigers, Rays, and Dodgers because they have to go back on the road against the Yankees.

      Like

    • Sandy
      August 12, 2015

      I think the same thing about that lineup. I really liked Hinch but I’m starting to wonder now. Seems like he keeps throwing the same bad hitters out there expecting a different outcome.

      Like

      • daveb
        August 12, 2015

        Well Sandy, those are the hitters he has to work with. Let’s not let our GM off the hook.

        Like

  11. 1oldpro
    August 12, 2015

    I think what is happening a lot on the road is that pitchers we are facing are comfortable in their home parks and once they figure out that they can handle the Astros batters, they get much more confident and are less afraid to throw their pitches and move their stuff around.
    Last night, early, Bumgarner was trying to find the corners and was missing. He had given up two early singles and was falling behind in the count. As he got deeper into the lineup he figured out that Altuve and Gomez had gotten lucky by getting ahead and guessing in their first at bats and that his stuff was not hittable by the Astros, so he just poured it in over the plate and the Astros were overmatched. Kazmir errored himself out of the game for the second game in a row, but, honestly, he has to be wondering where his catcher is on all these squibbers hit out in front of the plate. Conger never shows up on squibbers and bunts because he is immobile behind the plate, which is why he can’t throw, he cannot put himself in a good position to throw. He is Jabba the Hutt behind the plate except when he jumps and flops just as his pitcher is fixing to deliver the ball. Conger makes Castro look like an All-Star receiver and it is very telling to other teams. The next team that faces Kazmir is going to bunt on him, especially if Conger is catching. The shift makes it easier to bunt deeper down the line also, making the pitcher have a longer throw.
    Also, for the second game in a row, the runner was running inside the line and Kazmir should have hit him square in the back, rather than making a bad throw way inside the bag. The runner will be called out!
    Basic baseball. This road trip, the Astros have not been playing basic baseball. We are a .500 team that had two .360 hitters for the entire month of April, Altuve and Marisnick, who have regressed, big time, to the norm.
    Compare the team you see right now, to the one you thought you would see the day before the season started and it is the same team.
    The one upgrade is at SS, but even that was at the cost of losing Lowrie’s bat for three months.

    Like

    • Sandy
      August 12, 2015

      Sadly, you’re right. The team I playing now IS what I was expecting in April.

      Like

    • daveb
      August 12, 2015

      OP1, I think yours is a fair assessment. And that’s why I can’t be overly upset with recent events. The club is getting better, but indeed, we still have big holes. I’m looking forward to seeing how composed they remain over the next 6 weeks. But I’m already looking more forward to 2016.

      Like

      • 1oldpro
        August 12, 2015

        Yes, Drellich said yesterday that the team has filled it’s needs with the addition of Perez, and that they will probably go with what they have unless they get a miracle of the waiver wire.

        Like

  12. 1oldpro
    August 12, 2015

    One thing I would be willing to bet on: We won’t see Oliver Perez pitching to Hunter Pence tonight. Hunter’s slash line against Oliver is .600/.714/1.400/2.114. Yowza!

    Like

  13. Mr. Bill
    August 12, 2015

    Speaking of 2016 . . .

    Chris Devenski had another great outing for the Hooks last night. 6.0 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 4 H, 8 Ks, 0 BBs vs. a tough Arkansas team. His ERA is now down to 2.90. A.J. Reed got a double in 3 trips. Nothing from Moran [except two Ks in 4 trips], but he’s still hitting .306.

    Mark Appel goes tonight for Fresno. Last night Tyler White was 2-4 with a double and a run scored. He did K once in his four opportunities. His BA at Fresno is now .366, where he also has a .463 OBP and a 1.032 OPS.

    Like

    • Kevin
      August 12, 2015

      Poor ol Duffy Hitting what .302 has 88 rbi’s, but hey lets run out Crater

      Like

      • BrianT
        August 12, 2015

        You’ve got to think Luhnow tried moving Carter at the deadline. Not sure he can be moved on waivers right now. Not to a specific team in a trade.

        Which stinks because I’d like to see White. I’d waive Grossman at this point. He has no value that five other guys don’t have.

        Like

    • Becky
      August 12, 2015

      Mr.bill…..I would LOVE to see Mr.Devenski pitch in person….wouldn’t you!!! That kid has a bright future as well as Michael Feliz!! Jane Hanson keeps me up to date on these kids she’s an amazing woman….I love her blog.op

      Like

  14. Becky
    August 12, 2015

    I have a feeling that on Thursday luhnow is going to start trading guys off this club, as in sending Marisnick to Fresno, and DFA Carter. This would be a perfect time to do it, since this is a day off and he could get a couple of new guys in the line up for the series starting this weekend. It’s past time to fish or cut line, the next 40 or so regular games are crucial, and this team is in BIG trouble with 90% of them striking out every time they get to the plate. Really…..I think Carter knows he’s history, and he should be. He might be a great teammate, but being a great teammate doesn’t drive in runs. Cut bait. Sending Marisnick to AAA will give him a chance to sink or swim….
    Let’s hope he gets his swing back, if not for this year for next year. Time to swim Jake.
    The playoffs (if they get there) are going to very tough. If these guys thought Bumgarner was tough last night, wait until they see who will be pitching in THOSE games. It wouldn’t bother me one tiny bit if Jeff luhnow replaced the hitting coach as well. Something is very wrong when you have so many guys striking out at this alarming rate…..either they have all gone brain dead at the plate, or they are getting bad coaching from the hitting coach. I think it’s the latter. These guys can’t keep hoping the Angels and Rangers lose just so they can stay in 1st place, at some point they have GOT to start winning on the road. Every single pitcher who has pitched on this road trip have pitched well enough to win these games…..nuf said.

    Like

  15. Kevin
    August 12, 2015

    Here Here Becky!!!!!

    Like

  16. Zanuda
    August 12, 2015

    I second the motion!

    Like

  17. Mr. Bill
    August 12, 2015

    * But right now, no matter how bad things look, the Astros are in first place. Do you remind yourself of that when things look bleak? *

    Having the team we support somehow sitting in first place in August despite being certifiably Level IV bipolar has elicited some strange coping mechanisms from some of us. This strange phenomena has opened up a whole new era of Astroholism. New coping mechanisms that have developed to deal with this new era of Astroholism include:
    1. Choosing to watch and cheer enthusiastically for whoever the Angels and Rangers are playing rather than endure the excruciating pain of watching the Astros’ games;
    2. Choosing to scour the box scores of every Astros minor league affiliate over and over again in the hope something – anything – will be found there that will temporarily offset, if not relieve, some of the intense pain of watching Chris Carter, Jake Marisnick, and others whose names we will not mention flail wildly at pitches we know they will never hit;
    3. Seeing some Chipalatta bloggers go rogue and start to attack and spew venom at fellow bloggers, even though those fellow bloggers are supporting the same team, cheering for the same players, and wanting nothing but the best for the organization;
    4. Spending hours on end trying to calculate the odds that the team that wins the AL West this year will end the season with a below .500 record; and
    5. Longing for the sweet relief of hearing that one of our own gets DFA-ed so we can move on.

    Like

    • 1oldpro
      August 12, 2015

      Bill, my last confession was some time ago.
      #1. I am not guilty
      #2. Guilty as charged and awaiting my penance
      #3. Not guilty. Handled that in my last confession and have been much better.
      #4. Have never done this. Because I have no experience with playoff hopes since I became a member of the Senior Moment/Senior Discount crowd. Totally foreign to me.
      #5. In secret, in my own private thoughts but in a venial way I am guilty of this sort of thought, but not bad enough to warrant punishment. Just don’t let Carter push me any further or I will have to return to the confessional soon for sure! See: I’m Your Captain/I’m Getting Closer by Grand Funk Railroad. Yea, Yea, Yea.

      Like

      • Mr. Bill
        August 12, 2015

        There is no punishment, OP1. After all, whatever the charges may be, we are all bound by precedent to plead “not guilty by reason of Astroholism”. That’s our story, and we’re sticking to it. We probably need counseling and we definitely need prayer. But most our symptoms can be ameliorated by spending the next 30 days sitting on the beach on our Caribbean Island of choice, singing Jimmy Buffet songs, and carefully avoiding all sports broadcasts. See you on St. Thomas. I’ll be the one in sunglasses and flip-flops.

        Like

    • Tim
      August 12, 2015

      1. Yes
      2. Yes
      3. Sssss!
      4. No
      5. Not consciously, but subconsciously, yes.

      Like

  18. Kevin
    August 12, 2015

    Well so far this lineup looking much better at the plate no K’s in 2 innings.

    Like

  19. Becky
    August 12, 2015

    When you look at all the prospects luhnow gave up for Gattis and Conger it’s mind-boggling…..and it looks like luhnow lost those trades BIG time. Case in point, today’s 4th. Inning, Astros loaded the bases and one pitch to Gattis, and it’s all for nothibg.
    At least the Giants pitcher won’t throw a perfect game today, Correa got a hit off him.

    Like

    • Kevin
      August 12, 2015

      Gattis’s 17th ground out in a row , Altuve man almost

      Liked by 1 person

    • BrianT
      August 12, 2015

      Becky, I respectfully disagree.

      Hattie’s missed a chance. But he’s leading this team in RBIs and has had many timely ones.

      Liked by 1 person

      • BrianT
        August 12, 2015

        Gattis. Stupid autocorrect.

        Like

      • BrianT
        August 12, 2015

        Folty has an ERA over 5.00. Ruiz is no Colin Moran. And Andrew Thurman?

        Yeah, I’ll take Gattis.

        Like

      • Becky
        August 12, 2015

        We will have to agree to disagree……he has been a disappointment.

        Like

      • Kevin
        August 12, 2015

        Im with becky he is average at best , good guy but average

        Like

      • Tim
        August 12, 2015

        I’m with Brian. No one we gave up in the Gattis trade is helping their team. As frustrating as Gattis can be at times he had some big HRs and RBIs in the 1st half and those games count as much as the games in August. If not for the early season success the Astros would be in 3rd place right now, if not lower, in the division.

        Like

      • BrianT
        August 12, 2015

        He’s more valuable than what we gave away. That’s all I’m saying.

        Liked by 2 people

  20. Mr. Bill
    August 12, 2015

    I may have figured it out. Our offense has an anxiety disorder. We suffer a horrible panic attack and revert to our worst experience in little league when:
    1. one our guys inexplicably walks; or
    2. we come to bat with the bases loaded.

    If one of our guys gets up with the bases loaded, and at least one of the guys on base got there via BB, it is absolutely hopeless.

    Like

  21. BrianT
    August 12, 2015

    And again we have a great pitching performance with zero run support. Feldman has been amazing. In fact, it looks like the Astros hitters (Lowrie, Altuve) who have been robbed by good D and bad luck.

    Well, besides that juggling job by Correa.

    Like

    • Kevin
      August 12, 2015

      Wahoo Gattis got a ball in the air. progress

      Like

  22. Becky
    August 12, 2015

    Please, oh please let us win this game. I promise to quit cussing (well maybe) if the baseball God’s let us win this game!!

    Like

  23. Mr. Bill
    August 12, 2015

    Chris Carter did what?

    Like

    • Becky
      August 12, 2015

      A big fat guy trying to steal on Buster Posey……..riiiight.

      Like

  24. Becky
    August 12, 2015

    WE WIN WE WIN WE WIN WE WIN!!!!!!!πŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ˜€

    Like

  25. Kevin
    August 12, 2015

    Wahoo we won even with 0-80 Gattis in there, TG Crater and JFSM were in the dugout for most of the game.

    Like

  26. Tim
    August 12, 2015

    As I posted on Twitter earlier…2-7 looks a helluva lot better than 1-8.

    Like

  27. Tim
    August 12, 2015

    Let’s go White Sox. Complete the sweep!

    Like

  28. 1oldpro
    August 12, 2015

    Today showed me why Rasmus has such good defensive numbers. He ran down a bunch of balls early in the game. He and Feldman were the heroes today. Lowrie’s home run was great for Gregerson because he could relax. He faced some real good hitters and got them out.

    Like

  29. astrocolt45
    August 12, 2015

    I would like to mention that in the East – it is 1300 miles Boston to Tampa. In the West it is 2400 miles Houston to Seattle. One could surmise that during the course of a season, this is a travel penalty for West teams because they have almost double the air and travel time when playing teams within their division of any team in the East or Central.

    It is not just the Astros – the Angels for August have LA, Chicago, KC, LA, Detroit, Cleveland and Oakland. There is no travel day between the Cleveland and Oakland game.

    Like

  30. Zanuda
    August 12, 2015

    Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus

    Like

  31. daveb
    August 12, 2015

    Tyler White playing first again. Singleton at DH. Interesting.

    Like

    • Becky
      August 12, 2015

      Think luhnow is watching White to see if he wants to give him a chance with the big club?
      Can’t hurt.

      Like

  32. 1oldpro
    August 12, 2015

    Mark Appel tonight: 8 innings, 4 hits, 1 run, 8 strikeouts, 1 walk. He was the winning pitcher. Way to go, Mark! Longest outing of his professional career. Tony Kemp broke out of his funk with a couple of hits.

    Like

    • 1oldpro
      August 12, 2015

      By the way, Wilin Rosario was 0 for 3 tonight against Appel, with a strikeout.

      Like

  33. 1oldpro
    August 12, 2015

    Joe Musgrove tonight: 6 innings, 4 hits, 2 runs on 2 HRs, 2 walks, 7 strikeouts and was the winning pitcher for CC. Teoscar, Reed and Kemmer with 2 hits each and Moran ejected in the fifth for arguing a called strike three. I love seeing that happen because one of the knocks against Moran was that he sometimes seemed not interested enough and the scouts thought he should be more fiery. It seemed to get his team mates fired up because Reed and Kemmer followed the ejection with big doubles and CC won going away. Velasquez pitched the ninth and had a walk and two Ks.

    Like

    • Becky
      August 13, 2015

      The Hooks had a little dust up last night. It didn’t turn into a fist fight, but some nose to nose name calling!! I’m with you, a little fire can stir the pot, I’m not saying it was good that Collin Moran got tossed, but I like his attitude!!
      AND…..thank you White Sox, beating the Angels in the 12th with a walk off!! We’re back to two games ahead of them, and the Rangers got *hammered* by a score of 11-1 πŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ˜€

      Like

  34. BrianT
    August 13, 2015

    The White Sox did us a favor, and now Houston is 2 games up going home (after more rest) while the Halos played a game and a half due to extra innings, catch a late flight and get four against the Royals.

    Like

  35. Roger
    August 13, 2015

    Reading all of the above I do agree that we have to be grateful that we are still in first place. It is also a surprise, given what we thought at the outset.
    I think the hitting coach has very little to do with current issues. There are some players here who have some serious limitations to begin with and I don’t believe they are amenable to coaching. They are what they are, except perhaps Marisnick, who will may improve over time. I still would not send him down.
    I agree with Brian that Gattis is better than what we gave up, and I expect he will play an important role in whether we get to the playoffs. Why? I have no idea, cause it’s all subjective. Which gets me to the last point: Metrics. For all the criticisms above, how important can metrics really be? Luhnow is a king of metrics, and many here are supporters, but I think the process is somewhat overrated, relative to the outcome.

    Like

  36. daveb
    August 13, 2015

    Roger, I almost hesitate to comment here again, because we’ve talked Marisnick into the ground. He’s not getting better though. He’s 0 for August. But he has a job today because we don’t have another pinch runner or outfield defensive replacement in the dugout. Apparently those metrics keep telling Luhnow that Jake has more value on the 25 man roster than any other guy we can bring up from AAA.

    But I do believe in metrics to a degree. This is a first place team. That’s a huge turnaround from 2014. It sure is a weird first place team though, one that I don’t think you could put together without using metrics. How could anyone come up with Gattis and Conger and Carter on the same squad without metrics?

    Like

  37. drbill14
    August 13, 2015

    I’ll respectfully disagree regarding Dave Hudgens and his effectiveness as hitting coach. IIRC on his watch the Mets offensive production declined three years in a row before he was fired and then hired by the Astros. With the Astros what has he accomplished? One could make the argument that no Astro is performing above expectations with the exception of Correa and many are performing below expectations. I was no big fan of John Mallee but it is a clear fact that last year Chris Carter got better and Jose Altuve got a lot better as the season progressed while this year both have dropped dramatically. Is there a single Astro hitter who is on an upward offensive trajectory through the course of the season?

    Like

    • Mr. Bill
      August 13, 2015

      Scott Feldman?

      Liked by 2 people

      • astrocolt45
        August 13, 2015

        Mr. Bill, funny you wrote that. I was watching Feldman hit and thought about posting that I wished the Astros were still in the NL. I decided against it because I did not want to knock a scab off of an old sore.

        Like

      • daveb
        August 13, 2015

        That’s a good line.

        Like

    • Roger
      August 13, 2015

      If the Mets found him unsuccessful— i guess a good question would be why did we hire him? I assume it means he has been successful somewhere in the past. If he is then unscuccessful with the Astros, we blame him. But, perhaps it is all due to chance. Perhaps the players improve, or get worse for reasons unrelated to coaching. I think I am just saying that all of this is far too unpredictable. I don’t believe there is a science here.

      Like

  38. 1oldpro
    August 13, 2015

    When the year began, we said that the Astros would probably lead the league in HRs and Ks. We knew they would not hit for average, because most of the main players did not have that history.
    But we have added Tucker, Correa and Gomez. That is three players with a history of higher BAs. The problem is that we have added those three and have subtracted only one, Villar. We need more subtraction!
    If a team is going to use all that fancy math, the least they can do is get their subtraction right.

    Like

    • BrianT
      August 13, 2015

      Gomez will replace Marisnick … but not until Springer returns. And Tucker replaced Grossman. It’s just been so long ago that most of us have forgotten.

      And, no offense, but you’re incorrect about Correa replacing Villar. Villar was only playing because Lowrie was injured. Correa essentially replaces Valbuena at third base by moving the now-healthy Lowrie to third.

      Once healthy, this becomes a much better offense. Springer was just starting to figure out the batting average thing when my least-favorite Royals starter plunked him on the wrist.

      If not for injuries (I know, every team deals with them), this could — and will — be a very different offense. Well, maybe just a somewhat difference offense. I think September will be a great month. If the Astros make it to Aug. 31 in first place, I think the division is ours.

      Like

    • Devin_
      August 13, 2015

      You only get to subtract Villar once, no matter how many times Becky would like to do so. As an aside, he has hit pretty well at AAA.

      Like

      • BrianT
        August 13, 2015

        I’m only subtracting Villar once — when he was sent down. It’s Valbuena as a full-time third baseman who I’m subtracting. Oh, sure, now Valbuena is at first base, but that subtracts Carter, and that’s always a good thing.

        Like

      • BrianT
        August 13, 2015

        However your comment regarding Becky’s feelings toward Villar made me laugh literally out loud.

        Like

      • Becky
        August 13, 2015

        Villerror…….aaah, sooo glad he’s someone else’s problem.πŸ˜€πŸ˜€

        Like

  39. 1oldpro
    August 13, 2015

    Anyone here looked at that Toronto lineup lately and given all the credit to their batting coach. Heck no! The guy who assembled that crew is sitting up in the GM’s skybox.
    If credit or criticism is warranted put it on the person who built the team. That’s the guy responsible. Not the hitting instructor. The hitting instructor is the guy who gets fired when the players the GM hired turn out to be the players that the GM hired.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tim
      August 13, 2015

      Fair enough, but does the GM get credit for having this team, mostly picked to finish 4th or 5th in the division, 2 games in 1st place on August 13th?

      Like

  40. 1oldpro
    August 13, 2015

    On August 13th, 2014 the Astros lost to the Twins 3-1. Matt Dominguez grounded into a DP. Carter knocked in the only run for the Astros, after they were down 3-0. Brett Oberholtzer was the losing pitcher and yielded 6 grounders and 11 flyouts. and a wild pitch. Singleton and Marisnick were Ofers and Corporan had a passed ball. Marwin was at SS and Fowler was in CF and leading off. Josh Fields gave up 2 runs in one third of an inning. The Astros were 50-71.

    Like

    • Mr. Bill
      August 13, 2015

      OP1, don’t you know Astroholics suffer from PTSD?

      Like

      • 1oldpro
        August 13, 2015

        Therapy, Bill. I’m trying to make the present seem softer and safer by showing that the past can be returned to AAA or released altogether.

        Like

      • Mr. Bill
        August 13, 2015

        DFA the past. I like it!

        Like

      • Sandy
        August 13, 2015

        We joke about this addiction but when one wakes elated because we won the night before, or depressed because we lost. And your game is over at 6 but you stay up until midnight to see what the Angles did. It’s serious.
        I’m guilty. Who else will admit it.

        Liked by 2 people

      • 1oldpro
        August 13, 2015

        Sandy, I will admit I stayed up to check on the Angels and got so tired I went to bed in the top of the 13th, before the walkoff. Do you think Father. Mr. Bill is hearing confessions, because that is definitely against rule #1.

        Like

      • Sandy
        August 13, 2015

        I actually gave up at the bottom of the 12th. But when I woke up at 2 I grabbed my iPad and checked the score. I slept happily the rest of them night.
        I know….I’m sick.

        Liked by 1 person

      • astrocolt45
        August 13, 2015

        I have added everyone on this blog to the Prayer list for our Church. I HAVE TO believe in miracles. We are in first place in August and it is not 2005 or before. That is a miracle alone.

        Like

  41. Mr. Bill
    August 13, 2015

    Dang it, Tyler White’s BA is dropping. He only went 1-3 with 2 walks and 2 runs scored last night. Dropped his BA from .366 to .365.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mr. Bill
      August 13, 2015

      By the way, the Corpus Christi Hooks apparently have a new closer. Some guy named Velasquez.

      Liked by 1 person

      • 1oldpro
        August 13, 2015

        If the Hooks played a 16 inning game and needed a pitcher late, I wonder If they’d let Reed throw an inning?

        Like

      • Tim
        August 13, 2015

        I like that they are grooming VV as a future closer.

        Like

    • daveb
      August 13, 2015

      Yeah, but his OBP is up to .467. Subtract 100 points from that. How many guys do we have with a .367 OBP? I think we might get that from him.

      Liked by 1 person

  42. rj
    August 13, 2015

    one of you smarter than me bloggers (and thats probably all of you) please invent a glove or device that protects the wrist and delicate hand bones. how many games did baggy have to miss from being hit in the hand – a bunch. limit that injury, help our team, make some money. bring springer back.

    Like

    • 1oldpro
      August 13, 2015

      All they have to do is not play the Royals. If the season ended today, the Royals would be preparing for the wild card game winner and the Astros would be preparing to fly to Toronto. And I would be preparing for black powder season and having to listen to national baseball bobbleheads talk about Cinderellas from Houston.

      Like

  43. Lester J. Gillis
    August 13, 2015

    Bagwell had his hand broken by pitches three times (and I think it was in three consecutive years), and finally someone made him a batting glove with a pad on the top to protect his hand. If I remember correctly, that particular design would not have saved Springer his broken bone(s), but maybe it’s possible for something that would could be designed.

    Like

  44. rj
    August 13, 2015

    you’re right lester. i remember that thing baggy started wearing. it was ungangly at best, one of the first early attempts. its padding stuck up a couple of inches. maybe somekind of new age lightweight but very strong material on top of the batting glove. a flak jacket for the hand.

    Like

  45. 1oldpro
    August 13, 2015

    Just laid my old friend and canine companion to rest in the woods where he loved to roam and chase rabbits.
    Life is short and sweet and the memories ooze out of me, fall to the ground in droplets, soften the soil and make it easier to make him a final bed to sleep in.
    I loved the way he protected Mrs. 1OP whenever she went for a walk.
    It has been a day.

    Liked by 4 people

    • BrianT
      August 13, 2015

      They give so much love, and it sounds like he got plenty in return. If my dogs aren’t waiting for me in heaven, I’m not sure the place will live up to its name.

      So sorry about the loss of your wonderful friend.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Mr. Bill
      August 13, 2015

      Friends are hard to find – but even harder to lose. Remember the good times – it sounds like there were many.

      Liked by 3 people

    • astrosfan57
      August 14, 2015

      I’m so sorry to hear that, I’ve been there and know the sorrow and pain. My thoughts and prayers are with you

      Like

  46. Sandy
    August 13, 2015

    So sorry OP. I lost one of mine in May. I feel your pain.

    Liked by 1 person

  47. Becky
    August 13, 2015

    Your sweet puppy will see you again. Just look for him on the rainbow bridge…….he’s there I promise. We are all so very sorry. Becky

    Liked by 1 person

    • Roger Klein
      August 13, 2015

      My thoughts are with you 1 OP. I have been there and know the pleasure and the pain. May your many happy memories give you peace.

      Like

  48. BrianT
    August 13, 2015

    Just listening to the Angels-Royals game. KC’s radio guy said the Halos are batting .160 with RISP for August.

    We’re not the only ones with problems.

    Like

  49. astrocolt45
    August 13, 2015

    Sign in our vet’s office:

    β€œIt came to me that every time I lose a dog, they take a piece of my heart with them. Yet, every new dog who comes into my life gifts me with a piece of their heart. If I live long enough, all the components of my heart will be dog, and I will become as generous and loving as they are.” …Unknown

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sandy
      August 13, 2015

      That’s just beautiful.

      Like

    • Becky
      August 13, 2015

      And kitty’s too! I do love my cats!

      Like

      • Sandy
        August 13, 2015

        Love my Lacey cat too. She likes to watch the Astros on TV.

        Like

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This entry was posted on August 11, 2015 by in Astros.
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