Astros: Foot on the throat time


This may seem like a Debbie Downer post,  but despite the Astros wonderful, dominant 8-2 bookend wins over the Boston Red Sox, they have a lot of work to do.

It is critical that the Astros step on their opponent’s throats right away. They don’t need to give the Sox any life in this series. They don’t need to bobble game three and/or four and hobble into the next round tired or out of sorts. And they really don’t need to start the next series with anyone, but Justin Verlander and Dallas Keuchel as their Game 1 and 2 starters.

Think back to 2005 when the Pujols home run forced the Astros to use Roy Oswalt to finish off the Cards rather than start the World Series against the White Sox. Did it change the ultimate outcome? We will never know.

There is praise to be handed out after two solid home wins by the good guys.

  • Alex Bregman made his first playoff swing of the bat count as he gave the team a 1-0 lead two batters into the first game.
  • Jose Altuve was not Jose Altuve when the Astros played the Royals in the 2015 ALDS. His 3 for 22 performance stuck in his craw for a long time. This time his unbelievable 3 HR first game and 5 for 7 performance through the first two games should have cleared that craw.
  • Verlander and Keuchel were good, not great through their first games. However, looking around at the starting pitching carnage throughout the playoff teams, they had the best two teammate starts to date.
  • Carlos Correa and George Springer played outside the festivities of the first game, but came back strong in the second game to help salt that game away.
  • Marwin Gonzalez‘s 2 run double may have been the biggest hit in the opening win and Evan Gattis has continued his late season solid hitting.
  • Josh Reddick continues to go contrary to his career numbers and is hitting left handed pitchers in the playoffs as he did during the season.
  • The bullpen gave up a single run in a solid 6.1 IP of work.
  • A.J. Hinch did a masterful job of getting a bunch of his playoff newbies game time and the team should be rested and ready going forward.

So, bottomline, the Astros need to go to Boston, whip a dog who is down and move on to the next round of the playoffs.

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213 comments on “Astros: Foot on the throat time

  1. I said never a doubt about Beltran in the playoffs from day 1. And then watched every negative comment along the way.

    But I have to give it a serious eat crow and hats off to Alex Bregman. The kid has come to play big time. He has earned the respect of that infield all around and I never thought that would happen!!

    Giles made it an adventure as usual although look at his age and how we have him locked up. This team is built for years and years and years to come…

    Liked by 1 person

    • I should say I did not think Bregman would arrive this year. I really thought he’d take a year to contribute enough, but instead he’s flashed the leather and come up with crushing blows against the opposition. I’d almost say he was MVP.

      I’m not watching it – who will win MVP? Altuve in this game was meh!

      Anyway, great teams have many heroes. That’s what we have!!!

      Liked by 1 person

      • This is what I expected from Bregman. ..this is why he was my trade untouchable prior to season! I however was disappointed by his slow start and thought he should have been sent down in may. Ha ha oops.

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  2. Ken Giles.
    In the pouring rain holds, and closes out the biggest game he’s ever pitched in. For two innings.

    Can that be overstated?

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  3. Nail biter it was but our boys prevailed. They needed this type of game, a game of momentum change every other inning or so, ala Cubs today against the Nats. While I would love to see the Astros mash their way to a WS championship, they need these type of gms to teach them to how to win in those tough, tight series

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  4. So many examples of clutch performances today. I almost had my prediction come through, Beltran with a 3 run homer, but I’ll settle for the double of the wall for the insurance run. 100 mile Giles did the job today. These guys didn’t quit and that says a lot. Just a great game today. I was afraid I was going to have to get some Nexum, Prilosec, or Rolaids before it was over with because my stomach was just in knots throughout the game. A victory for what ails you is the cure.
    Billy, glad to hear you’re doing OK. We need all the support we can muster for the next series.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Sure am glad they won today, I’ve been wearing my orange Springer shirt for four days! Thank goodness I can wash it now, and start all over on Friday!! Man, doesn’t it feel good to be an Astros fan today! I’m still ((grinning )) from ear to ear!

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  6. I would like to see McHugh added to the ALCS roster for Dave’s nephew and make him part of the rotation. It was evident to me that Hinch had very little confidence in his bullpen outside of Devo or Giles. I would move Peacock to the bullpen with McCullers and Musgrove as multi-inning options. I think McHugh can handle the 4th starter spot and Morton the 3rd starter spot. We will need more options in the bullpen than what we have now. By the way, this is not a knock on Dave’s nephew, but someone has to be removed if we add McHugh and he seems the logical choice.

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    • Hell yeah! Loving it..I’m a Yankees fan (so obviously knocking the red Sox out was extra sweet for me) but I know they will be an easier win for us so come on guys!

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