JuneChipalattAwards: Tough month for Astros


June was an up and down month for an Astro team dealing with a bunch of overlapping injuries. They started off at 10-3, then lost 7 in a row to fall to 10-10 before rallying to finish the month at 15-12. Unlike many previous months, there were not a bunch of players vying for the top spots below, but there were at least some solid choices.

 

Starting Pitcher of the Month. Gerrit Cole.  Cole ended May with a mediocre 4.02 ERA, but 6 strong starts in June from him pulled his overall ERA down to a fine 3.28. For the month he was 3-0 with a 1.89 ERA, 1.026 WHIP in 38 innings with 49 Ks as he continued to lead the majors with 161 strikeouts on the year He deserved been better than those 3 wins as he only gave up 1 ER in four of his starts and 2 ER in his other two.

Runner-up.  Wade Miley. Miley nosed out Verlander for this spot with a 1-1 record, 3.76 ERA and 1.253 WHIP. Verlander’s 10 home runs allowed on the month drove him to a 4.02 ERA in June.

Last Month. Justin Verlander was the winner and Brad Peacock was the runner-up.

Everyday Player of the Month.  Yordan Alvarez. In only 16 games and 60 ABs, young YA was a revelation – cobbling together a .317 BA/ .406 OBP/ 1.139 OPS slash while scoring 12 runs, hitting 7 HRs and knocking in an impressive 21 runs. He was one of the few bright spots for an offense starving for some clutch hitting.

Runner-up.  Robinson Chirinos. Despite a so-so batting average, Chirinos’ other numbers were pretty impressive for a player who is normally in the 7th or 8th spot in the order. He slashed .235 BA/.376 OBP/ .906 OPS, scored 12 runs, hit 6 HRs and knocked in 17 runs during June.

Last Month. George Springer was the winner and Alex Bregman was the runner-up.

Relief Pitcher of the Month. Will Harris had the best month for a bullpen that was struggling during June. He put up a sterling 1.59 ERA along with a 1-1 record in 11.1 IP.

Runner-up.  Collin McHugh – Sure he struggled a little Sunday and only pitched in 4 games in June with his stay on the IL, but he showed to be healthy again and that he is ready to take back his role from 2018 for late inning, high leverage support.

Last Month – The winner was Ryan Pressly and Will Harris was the runner-up.

Biggest Surprise (Positive). Myles Straw. There’s no power there, but he has put up a slash .298 BA/.400 OBP/.783 OPS that is more than acceptable, plus showing the kind of speed that puts pressure on the defense (when he doesn’t miss touching 3rd base). Oh and he has been decent in limited reps at SS after just learning it this season at AAA.

Runner-up.  Cy Sneed. That 6.00 ERA in one appearance does not get the heart pumping, but he toughed it out through 6 innings of 4 run relief when the bullpen was gassed and Brad Peacock had gone out after 3 innings and onto the IL. He was not great, but A.J. Hinch did not have to go and rescue him and that was a team victory.

Last Month – Josh James was the winner with Aledmys Diaz as the Runner-up

Biggest Disappointment.  Brad Peacock. Probably unfair considering he was probably pitching through an injury, but with their struggles with the 5th spot in the rotation, they really did not need the 4th spot in the rotation to go 1-4 with a 6.39 ERA in June.

Runner-up.  Tyler White. Even though his OBP and OPS don’t suck, his 5 runs scored, 2 HRs and 7 RBIs are pretty pitiful for a guy who has had so many ducks on the pond in front of him.

Last Month – The “winner” was Jose Altuve with Tyler White as the runner-up.

The surprising stat award. OK – two surprising stats. The Astros won 15 games and their closer, Roberto Osuna had only 1 save. Mr. Pressly also had a save during the month. The other surprising stat? Jose Altuve in 48 June at bats had 1 – I said 1 – walk for the month. So even though he hit .292 BA, his .314 on base percentage was 8th among the everydays on the team in June.

The Barnum and Bailey Juggler Award. A.J. Hinch. In a month when he got only 2 HRs and 5 RBIs total out of Carlos Correa, Aledmys Diaz, Jose Altuve and George Springer and only 4 wins total from starters Verlander, Miley and Peacock, Hinch squeezed a 15-12 record out of this team.

Bottom line, do you agree with these awards?

Want to propose awards of your own?

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109 comments on “JuneChipalattAwards: Tough month for Astros

  1. Biggest disappointment for me was Alex Bregman. Doesn’t seem like he delivered a big hit when needed. I used to be excited for him to come up with RISP and the game on the line but now I expect him to pop up or strike out and he is meeting those expectations. White has been awful all season so I don’t have ANY expectations of him except to take up a roster spot. The only guys I really want to see up in a big spot are Springer and Alvarez and maybe Brantley or Reddick.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree Alex has been bad in the clutch – but even in June he scored 18 runs, hit 5 HRs and knocked in 14 runs while putting up a slash of .267 BA / .400 OBP / .875 OPS – which are decent numbers but not as good as we know he can produce (like in 2018).

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    • I think Alex has put a bit too much of the burden on his own shoulders. I just don’t expect the same lack of clutch hitting from him in the second half, and I don’t need to see the same homer pace either.

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  3. Isn’t it interesting that Yordan Alvarez is the player of the month for June?
    This Astros fan doesn’t even feel like Alvarez has become a regular on the Astros. I still feel he is being shuffled around to suit the opponent or the conditions. There is no way this guy should be sitting while Tyler White is playing.
    This team will not be whole again until Correa is back at short, Bregman is back at 3B, Gurriel is back at 1B, Alvarez is DHing and Marisnick is on the bench.

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    • Well, I guess the sore foot or sore knee on 44 is keeping him from playing the field. A shame to have him sitting for a series though, for whatever reason.

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  4. The Astros did sign Michigan CFer Jordan Brewer to a contract for a $500,000 signing bonus($49,000 under slot). That completes all top 17 draft picks.
    I am pretty sure they are trying to use most of their allotted money to sign round 18 pick Justin Campbell, a 6’7″ pitcher out of Simi Valley HS in california. He has a commitment to Tulane, but I think the Astros would really like to sign him.

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  5. Back to the issue of June awards – here are mine!

    1. The ‘Don’t Dare Give Up More Than One run, son, because You Can’t Count On This Team for Run Support’ Award goes to Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole.

    2. The ‘Shoulder Discomfort’ Award for June goes to Brad Peacock.

    3. The ‘Nobody Told Me to Leave, So I Guess I’m Still Here!’ Award goes to Tyler White.

    4. The ‘100+ Mile an Hour Line-Drive’ Award goes to Yordan Alvarez.

    5. The ‘Oops, Looks Like I’m Human, Too!’ Award goes to Ryan Pressley.

    6. The ‘Don’t Stare at Me this Month, There’s Nothing to See Here’ Award goes to Alex Bregman.

    7. The ‘You Almost Had it That Time – But You’ll Have to Be Quicker Than That’ Award goes to the Texas Rangers.

    8. The ‘Frequent Flyer’ Award goes to Reymin Guduan.

    9. The “Now You See Him, Now You Don’t” Award goes to Forrest Whitley.

    10. The “If Yordan Alvarez Is Moving Up, I Guess I Have to Kick It Into Gear!” Award goes to Kyle Tucker.

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  6. I found it interesting that Josh Reddick outperformed Michael Brantley at the plate and in the outfield in June. Reddick was very quietly very good.

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    • In case my post doesn’t come out as I accidently spelled my name wrong and now it’s waiting moderation

      Any update on the corresponding move to add Urquidy?

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      • I know White has some kind of dirt to still be here (probably involving Luhnow, a baby octopus, and a jar of ether) but I still get hopeful we cut bait soon. I feel bad cause he seems like a decent guy but this is past ridiculous

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  7. Anyone want to try and justify what team might want to carry him on their 25 man for the balance of the season? I hope he comes back to our organization and gets real help in changing his physical self. I’d hate to see him out of baseball. He might get to 300 plus over a winter.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I thought he already was…he already looks like John Kruk swallowed 1982-era Brian Wilson (the musical genius, not the flash-in-a-pan closer). That’s scary to think of. I’m sure though he’ll end up back in our organization if he does get DFA’d….which I don’t think he will

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    • Don’t we need him around to back up first base? At least till Correa comes back.
      Our infield looks on the thin side.

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      • True but at this point I’d almost rather have Reed up…little talent or ability but at least puts forth some effort.

        Almost. I mean I’m not entirely crazy!

        Hasn’t YA played some first?

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    • I think White stays around until Diaz gets back. I don’t think you go forward with only on 1B on the team. I do not think White would clear waivers. I think a lot of teams would have interest. He has hit at the MLB level and his 2019 stats and a waiver posting would ensure he goes into arbitration at the floor, which means he comes out cheap even if he starts producing again. Every rebuilding team would give him a shot.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Lol…I literally made an AJ Reed post right as you posted that. I almost felt bad for jinxing him but then I remembered it was only AJ Reed

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    • SO 1OP, do you think they are working a trade or will they let him hit waivers? They have 1 week. He will be snapped up by someone based on what he once was.

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      • If the DFA’d him, that probably means they have been finding out what he would get in return. Now they will try to get two teams interested and see what the return really is. They need a team that is not on the bottom of the standings to give something for him, because that team would lose out on him to the O’s or Marlins, who would snatch him up for nothing.
        The bottom line is this: Urquidy is worth a lot more to Houston at this juncture than Reed is. Remember Reed’s build, also. He has always fought his weight as a professional.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. So Reed seems to be one of those AAAA guys (or does he pull a JD Martinez and morph into a major leaguer.
    Just turned 26 y.o. – I wonder if there is any thought to switching him back to pitching (was like 12-2 with a 2 ERA in his last season at Kentucky. He just seemed to have a slow bat when we saw him up with the big club.

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    • Can’t see him ever amounting to anything. If his swing got any slower, the bat would be stationary and swinging *him* instead.

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  9. I saw Reed pitch and hit a hr against LSU in his last year at KY. I envisioned him being our long sought after 1B man. In fact, I mentioned on this forum that he might be our Joe Adcock. Boy did I miss it on this one. Maybe he could make it as a relief pitcher.

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      • The last thing he needs is jelly, unless it’s petroleum jelly and he’s trying to put on the Skeeters uniform in two years

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      • 🍺 <—- This beer may help you forget it. I personally quite drinking 5 years ago but I hear a cold Coors can help with that lol

        (if the image doesn't show, then my joke has been in vain _

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    • On the plus side the kid toughed it out both innings and held it to 1 run each inning – could have totally melted down with the wild pitches and all

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  10. I have absolutely no problem with the young man’s first showing. He battled hard against a dangerous lineup on the road in a hitter’s stadium. I’m ok with that for a first start.

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  11. I feel pretty good about our newest Jose. Pretty much threw strikes. Good movement. Raw. Composed though. Kept us in the game. Glad our guys were able to give him five early. I’d like to see five more.

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  12. Man, too much offense on the wrong side. The offense is gonna have to really step it up until the FO wheels & deals, our SP improves.

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  13. That’s the Altuve I remember, the one who could poke his bat out for a pitch and get a hit. Terrible swing with good results, lol

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  14. So good to see Altuve running so well, and hitting too. He’s not himself at second yet. The guys really picked up James and the pen tonight. Excellent win.

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  15. I really like what the rookie did in a tough environment tonight. He threw a lot of pitches but really battled through adversity to limit the damage. James really looked bad (totally sucked), Harris was shaky (kinda sucked) but Devo had a really good outing to save the day. The back end of the bullpen was lights out.

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  16. Urquidy stayed composed – as someone mentioned that’s a good sign. The first 2 innings it looked like he was aiming the ball. In the third he flowed better in his delivery and had a short inning. His control needs to improve, and he didn’t show that he has an out pitch. Seems like most of their hits came with 2 strikes. But he didn’t allow many well-hit balls – the only one that got out of the infield was Arenado’s gapper in the first.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. DAAAANG…I couldn’t go to very many games at Coors Field, that game made me nuts two or three times tonight! I’m worn out just listening to it, I can only imagine what it’s like being there! The little rookie didn’t appear too rattled, and pretty much held his own with good defense behind him.
    One thing is a glaring must have, and that’s another starter! They are in big trouble if Verlander, Cole or Miley go down. REALLY big trouble. Altuve has two steals so far tonight was #2…I hope he feels like he’s really back now.
    AND…..what in the HECK was going on with Josh James???? WOW, not cool dude.
    Arlington little league lost tonight!

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  18. For all that we receive from Verlander when in the field, he might be our biggest cheerleader off the field. When a 15 year veteran, a future Hall of Famer takes on that role, you know it’s a good group in that clubhouse.

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  19. And Yuli is in fuego – two walkoffs against the Ms and then the double and two homers including the 2 run HR to make it 9-8.

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  20. -Looking closer at the AJ Reed situation, his DFA was more surprising than it should have been. He lost his job with the Astros because he lost his job in Round Rock. There is little comparison between his stats and those of Taylor Jones in the hitting column. But the most telling stat was that Jones has played more innings and games at 1B than Reed, and has zero errors for the year, compared to Reed’s 5 errors.
    The stats were right there. I just didn’t see their meaning until now.

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      • And Jones the baseball player has come to us from a basketball school. Assuming Tubby goes packing when Diaz gets back, Taylor is our man if we need help at first. And he’s a real, apparently smooth guy around the bag. As OP notes, he does not kick the ball around. Gosh, when was the last time we had a real first baseman? And don’t start picking on me for liking Nate Freeman. If Taylor keeps hitting, he’ll have a job with the big before long.

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  21. Chandler Rome reports that Yuli Gurriel sought out advice from Carlos Beltran in NY on the Astros’ previous road trip.
    Gurriel says that Beltran told him to look at the baseball with two eyes instead of one eye. In order to see the ball with both eyes, Gurriel had to open his stance more at the plate. We are now watching Gurriel’s results of that conversation.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Remember when a long, long time ago that DanP posted “Of Two Minds?” He questioned the development of pitchers and everyday players. Just for fun, lets look at the 1st basemen since Berkman left for the bright lights. Starter of most games and (backup(s)).

    2011: Brett Wallace (Matt Downs, Carlos Lee) 2012: Carlos Lee (Matt Downs, Chris Johnson, Brandon Laird, Scott Moore, Steve Pearce, Chris Snyder, Brett Wallace), 2013: Chris Carter (Ronny Cedeno, Carlos Corporan, Jake Elmore, Marc Krauss, Brandon Laird, Carlos Pena, Brett Wallace), 2014: Jon Singleton (Jesus Guzman, Chris Carter, Marwin Gonzalez, Marc Krauss) 2015: Chris Carter (Marwin Gonzalez, Jon Singleton, Luis Valbuena) 2016: Margo (Jason Castro, Yuli, A J Reed, Luis Valbuena, Tyler White) 2017: Yuli (JD Davis, Evan Gattis, Margo, Colin Moran, Reddick, Tyler White) 2018: Yuli (JD Davis, Margo, AJ Reed, Tyler White)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Man there is a lot of ugly on there – only Valbuena, Yuli and Marwin bring back good memories for me at 1B for the Astros (Pena was washed up when he got here / Pearce went on to be successful elsewhere

      Liked by 1 person

      • I was looking at the current stats for those Departed. JD Davis is hitting .283 for the Mets. Poor fielder but decent hitter. Could have been a DH…… never mind. But what caught my eye is he has played several games in Left Field with Todd Frazier playing 3rd. Can you imagine a slow roller down the line and into the left field corner. That has to be at least a triple.

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  23. Seth Beer will be pushing form playing time at AAA level in short order. His minors career slash is .303/.392/.519 with 29 HR and 107 RBI in only 142 games. He crushed the ball at Fayetteville and was moved up to AA after only 35 games. At AA he is slashing .281/.378/.486 with 8 HR and 31 RBI in only 40 games.

    He is only an option at 1B and DH.

    Toro is also raking at AA and will probably be in AAA before seasons end. Toro is manning 3B, but is not that great of a defender at the position. He is probably better served at 1B.

    Jones, Toro and Beer offer a lot of promise towards solidifying 1B in the future.

    Liked by 1 person

    • We all know that stats posted here only serve the poster, but I just don’t have an answer after all these years. Why can a guy hit in the minors and not hit in the majors? Here is the slash line for Tyler White in 6 seasons in the minors: .305/.404/.509/.913. Or 6 years of A.J. Reed: 282/.374/.540/.914.

      The old timers example was Rocky Nelson. In 13 minor league seasons – .319 and in 9 seasons in the majors .249. He went up and down more times than an elevator.

      Liked by 1 person

      • 45, I’m convinced your two examples either could not or did not care to keep themselves in the physical condition essential to turning on a baseball properly.

        Liked by 3 people

      • ac, I agree with you about counting your 1B chickens. I am content to sit back and watch Beer and Jones and Toro for at least another year while we have Gurriel thru the end of 2020 on his contract. After Yuli is ready to go out to pasture, we see who moves in to take over 1B.

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      • The point of my post is that we have 3 viable options. It is unlikely that all three carry same production into MLB. However, the likelihood of 1 out of 3 doing it are pretty good. It’s nice to be in a position where your’e betting all or nothing on a single prospect to make it.

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      • V Man, I was not knocking your post. But it is amazing to me how a good college football player can move almost seamlessly into the NFL. Same with NBA. But with MLB, it is just not so. And as to Tyler White being “Heavy”, I signed up for MILB and have watched a couple Hooks and Round Rock games. There are plenty of Tackles on those teams if the Texans need help in the line

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  24. We watched the last few innings of the Angels/rangers game last night and saw an Angels player Tommy LA Stella foul a ball off his right leg. He broke his leg on that foul ball…..it was pretty awful to watch. This kid was really starting to get it all together batting nearly 300 at the plate, now he will miss 10-12 weeks.

    Like

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