Repeats abound in ChipalattAwards for May 2019


Despite nagging injury problems (Jose Altuve, George Springer, Aledmys Diaz, Carlos Correa, Collin McHugh and Max Stassi – well maybe not Stassi), the Astros posted a strong 20-8 record in May. It was a team effort as even the lowest players on the totem pole helped out in those 20 wins.

Here are awards to the standouts for the month.

Starting Pitcher of the Month. Justin Verlander. If he keeps pitching like this he may be able to retire this award. In the month of May he was 4-1 with a 2.29 ERA and a microscopic 0.594 WHIP. The following numbers against him are insanely impressive  .124 BA / .171 OBP/ .476 OPS. He treats the league like they are all a bunch of pitchers hitting. He is good for a solo home run every start or so, but usually that is all the man gives up.

Runner-up.  Brad Peacock. Peacock performed like a top of the line pitcher for the month going 3-1 with a 2.76 ERA and a 1.102 WHIP. He was obviously a step down from Verlander, but who isn’t these days? Like Verlander and Wade Miley, he gives the Astros a good shot to win every time out.

Last Month – Justin Verlander was the winner and Wade Miley was the runner-up.

Everyday Player of the Month.  George Springer. Based on pure run production, this could easily be Alex Bregman, but Springer was not that far back during his 18 games played in the month. Springer put up a .368 BA/ .432 OBP/ 1.212 OPS with 20 runs scored, 8 HRs and 19 RBIs. It was a total shame he was interrupted by the injury bug.

Runner-up.  Alex Bregman. It was tough to not give it to Bregman in a month he set the club record for HRs in May. He was very good, but not as consistently great as Springer. In May, Alex had a .260 BA/ .363 OBP/ .998 OPS with 23 runs scored, 12 HRs and 24 RBIs.

Last Month – George Springer was the winner and Michael Brantley was the runner-up.

Relief Pitcher of the Month.   Ryan Pressly. In May, Pressly set the MLB record for most consecutive scoreless appearances (40) running back to August 2018. He did finally prove human and gave up a solo HR, but he continued to be nails in the late innings. On the month he was 0-0 with a 0.64 ERA in 14 innings and allowed a puny .163 BA/ .196 OBP/ .441 OPS.

Runner-up.  Will Harris. Harris has been the stealth reliever this year and it could easily be argued that he should have won this month’s award. He was 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA, 0.828 WHIP in 9.2 IP. He gives the Astros a great third choice in late inning situations.

Last Month – The winner was Ryan Pressly and Roberto Osuna was the runner-up.

Biggest Surprise (Positive). Josh James.  In April, James looked like baseball had figured him out after his success at the end of 2018. But he settled down and did a fine job of giving the Astros a multi-inning option out of the bullpen. In May, he posted 2-0, 2.93 ERA in 15.1 IP and 25 K’s.

Runner-up.  Aledmys Diaz. The new addition from Toronto got off to a poor start with the team in April, but he made up for it in May (especially subbing for the injured Altuve) putting up .339 BA/ .383 OBP/ .942 OPS with 12 runs scored, 3 HRs and 13 RBIs. He was playing good defense along with providing improved offense when he unfortunately went down with a hamstring injury.

Last Month – Wade Miley was the winner with Josh Reddick as the Runner-up

Biggest Disappointment.  Jose Altuve. Sure he missed most of the month with an injury, but he was doing very little before that considering he had Springer and Bregman in front of him and Brantley and Correa behind him. In 9 games he was hitting .226 BA/ .339 OBP/ .656 OPS and had 6 runs scored, 0 HRs and 1 RBI.

Runner-up.  Tyler White. You have the chance to be the main DH for a World Series contender based on some good hitting in 2018 and you do like White did in May – .185 BA/ .247 OBP/ .539 OPS with 5 runs scored, 1 dinger and 8 RBIs. Yuck.

Last Month – The “winner” was Max Stassi with Josh James as the runner-up.

The surprising stat award. Speaking of Mr. Stassi, I would not have guessed he was hitting .240 BA or would have had a .345 OBP. The .585 OPS I could have guessed.

The Paul Bunyan award.  Carlos Correa. Oh, this is not for being a huge slugger. This is the tall tale award. Enough said.

Bottom line, do you agree with these awards?

Want to propose awards of your own?

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51 comments on “Repeats abound in ChipalattAwards for May 2019

  1. I have no quarrel with your choices, but someplace there needs to be an award for the FO and for maybe even the Round Rock Express. And there are several “Also-Rans” in the bullpen that are doing well.

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  2. I think Hinch gets Manager of the Month. He keeps a steady ship. When young guys are coming in, the demeanor from #14 has to be a calming influence. A week ago a couple of us were wondering why Fisher was leading off. Today we are not. We rarely find anything find anything to complain about with Hinch. He’s smarter than us. What manager in the game today would we rather have in the dugout?

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  3. Yes both the Front office and the Manager deserve kudos.
    Hinch came out to talk for both Verlander and Cole and left them both in which he rarely does. It showed confidence in the two pitchers and they rewarded the skipper’s trust.

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  4. Am I alone in thinking that Kimbrel and Keuchel may still struggle to find someone to ante up what they think they are worth even with no draft pick attached to their signings?
    I keep thinking this may be a one year (actually 2/3 of a year at this point) contract for each and they go back into FA after the season.

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    • It would appear that there is a consensus among baseball that they are both over-priced. OR maybe baseball thinks that it is May 1922 and they still have an antitrust exemption. (As we know, collusion is difficult to prove.)

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    • The Keuchel/Kimbrel situation is one that is affected by the current standings. For example:
      1. In the AL East the Yankees lead, have a great bullpen and are expecting their injured rotation to be back soon. The Rays aren’t big spenders and the Red Sox are already spending a ton.
      2. In the AL Central, the Twins are running away with it and are not considered big spenders long term. The Indians may end up being sellers and the rest of the division are not buying.
      3. In the AL West, the Astros could use pitching help for the stretch run but aren’t looking to spend Kimbrel money and could have had Keuchel before now without giving up a pick. The rest of the division might be sellers by the end of July.
      4. The Dodgers have pitching and are probably looking to make deals rather than investing in free agents right now. Nobody else in that division could stay with the Dodgers even with Keuchel/Kimbrel.
      5. The NL east is the place these two would fit, but is there enough of a bidding war here to make any of the contenders willing to pay up for these two.
      6. The competition is fierce in the NL Central, but there is not the money there for a 3-4 year haul for these two. One of them could end up here on a 2019 deal.

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  5. The Oakland team the Astros just left in their wake had won 10 of their previous 12 games, not even including the unfinished game that they were leading.
    All season long the Astros have been running into teams who were hot. The Angels were on a 5 game winning streak heading to Monterrey. The Mariners were 13-2 when the Astros came to visit Seattle.
    The Red Sox were 12-3 in their previous 15 games before Houston pulled into Fenway.
    The White Sox were 5-3 in their previous 8 games before splitting 4 in Houston. That stretch was the best they have been so far this season.
    And yet, the Astros are 40-20.

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  6. I harken back to the summer of 1980 when Houston (which normally runs about 93 F with 93% humidity all summer) hit 100 F or above for 32 straight days. I was working on the South Texas Nuclear Plant as my first job out of college and we were in buildings all over town. My particular building was a 3 story brick and glass building on Harwin at Ranchester that chose that heat wave to lose AC for 2 weeks.
    Basically, we could work for about 3 hours in the morning and then it was like work 20 minutes and then head out to the atrium, which was a little cooler for 20 minutes. The document control ladies worked with the lights off and just their computer screens for light. It was miserable. In the afternoon I would get home before my car AC would start taking effect.
    I’m sorry Diane.

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    • Back online but will sweat for a while. Sorry to hijack your awards. I’ll try to come back later with brilliant comment to make expiation. I brought ice and watermelon to my department, so I’m pretty sure I’ll get a raise.

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  7. As far as your disappointments go I think Altuve and Tyler White have the same affliction. I paid a lot more attention to Whites swing lately and he’d be a great boxer with the uppercut that he has. I don’t believe I’ve ever noticed a guy that looks like he’s trying to lift the ball like he has been. It almost looks like a 45 degree angle. Jose’s wasn’t as bad but he still looked like it was about 25 – 30 degree angle. Nothing scientific about it just a SWAG.

    Great weekend series for the good guys. Congrats to all!

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  8. One thing about stats, I think I see something and then the stats prove me wrong. It seems like every time we have no outs, runners on 1st and 2nd, we ALWAYS hit into a double play. No hits with runners in scoring position.

    Then the stats show that the Astros have scored 309 runs (9th in MLB). Behind Twins (347), LAD (326), Rangers (323), etc. Then you scroll down to Miami (189). If the pitching continues like it is, then we are scoring enough runs. Twins have a run differential of +109 and the Astros 2nd at +99.

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  9. Some notes on Astros vs Mariners:
    -Wade LeBlanc has been hit very hard by RH batters this season. Seattle will use an opener tonight to try to nullify some of that.
    – If Narvaez is catching for Seattle, the Astros will probably test him. He has thrown out 6 of 32 runners attempting to steal. Murphy, their other catcher, has thrown out 5 of 12 attempted runners.
    -Jack Mayfield barreled up a pitch in his first MLB AB. Since then he has had trouble making contact.
    – So far in his professional career, Myles Straw has never not hit. His MILB career batting average is .301 and his MLB batting average is .353. In my 60 years of watching baseball, he is one of the best baserunners I have seen. He’s only 24 and still has not reached his potential as a base stealer. He needs to see more major league pitching to perfect his twitch.

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  10. Will have to second nomination for AJ Hinch. He is the Ice King. Mr. Frigidaire. Snow runs in his veins. Icicles dangle from his ears. He has a blizzard for a gizzard. His thermostat is permanently set at 20 below. He should star in the sequel to “Frozen.” When he’s fresh shaven, he’s talking about his ice. He’s the blue norther of MLB. And climate change only means to him that it’s gonna get colder.

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  11. Just thinking ahead for a bit. When the time comes for this group to all be healthy again, I sure hope that’s the case anyway, the only way we hold on to both speedsters is to be done with White and Kemp, one way or the other. And if the speedsters are still creating havoc on the bases, I’m okay with that. I’m not sure though that the club will be ready to part ways with Tony. Straw and Fisher will have to do some real convincing.

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  12. Here are the top 10 FA signings for 2019. (Player – age/yrs/total)

    Bryce Harper- 26/13/$330.0
    Manny Machado – 26/10/$300.0
    Patrick Corbin- 29/6/$140.0
    Nathan Eovaldi – 29/4/$68.0
    A.J. Pollock – 31/4/$60.0
    Andrew McCutchen- 32/3/ $50.0
    Zack Britton – 31/3/$39.0
    J.A. Happ – 36/2/$34.0
    Michael Brantley – 32/2/$32.0
    Charlie Morton – 35/2/$30

    At 1/$4.5, Miley holds his own with any pitcher on this list for much lower salary and far less commitment. Money saved allowed them to extend Bregman and Verlander and be in position to trade for help at the deadline if needed – advantage Astros

    At 2/$32, Brantley has outperformed every FA bat on the list. The low commitment and cost did not come at the expense of current and future flexibility – advantage Astros.

    The Astros were able to overpay a bit for Chirinos because they did not go crazy on other FAs. Chirinos has stepped up and is earning his money.

    I’m just not sure that big FA contracts pay off.

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  13. Vewill1, the one guy I really miss is Morton. What a gentleman. Assuming the arm does not give out on him, he’s a bargain too. But I think everyone thought Whitney would be mowing major leaguers down this summer. Our catcher has a WAR of 2.0. He’s paid his salary already!

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    • I agree with everything you just said. Morton is the one guy I would like to have kept. But I can’t forget that he just broke down at the end of last season, and if the goal is to win a WS I’m thinking the right move was to pass on him and hold cash in reserve for the trade deadline.

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  14. Holy guacamole – Gurriel hits a perfect double play ball but the SS comes home with it, but the carcher is backing up first and the Astros go ahead 4-2.

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  15. Wouldn’t surprise me one bit for Corbin to be on his way to Round Rock when they get back home. Clearly he needs to work on some stuff. Who??? Do you bring up? I really hope like heck Luhnow is working hard at getting another starter. Think we cold pry Stroman away from the Blue Jays?? He wants to get traded.

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  16. Astros win 4-2.
    Like their first two picks in the draft. Like that they are college players at big time baseball schools. Really like that they are RH batters. Never bought in to the idea of the Astros targeting HS players high in the draft, especially with the new ideas coming out of the future CBA talks. Developing MLB players is easier with college juniors than it is with HS seniors.

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  17. Last night I suggested Corbin might get sent back after his latest poor outing, Hinch seemed to indicate otherwise after the game. I guess it’s easier to keep a guy when others like Valdez step up. They’ve now won 4 of 5 Martin starts. He’s good luck!

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  18. I think they would like to send Corbin back to Round Rock but there isn’t anyone to take his place. He needs more AAA time to work things out.
    Having Whitley bomb out sure puts a wrinkle in the future of the rotation.

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  19. I think they may have to move either Framber Valdez or Josh James into the 5th spot. Weakens the bullpen, but they will be getting Smith and McHugh back at some point. Maybe they wait until then and pitch tandem Martin/Valdez until then

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