August ChipalattAwards for a winning month


The Astros had some ups and downs in August, but in the end, rolled to a very good 19-9 record. Just like in July, the hitters and the starting pitching carried the load, while the bullpen clung for dear life. There were some excellent performances and we will honor those here.

Starting Pitcher of the Month. Gerrit Cole. Both he and Justin Verlander were terrific in August, but Cole nudged out his rotation mate. Cole was 3-0 with a 2.36 ERA and a tiny 0.713 WHIP. His opponents only managed a slash line of .165 BA/ .195 OBP/ .515 OPS for the month, which is like having 9 so-so hitting pitchers in the lineup.

Runner-up.  Justin Verlander. JV’s numbers were plenty good in August with a 2-1 record, 2.57 ERA and a 0.773 WHIP. He was just a little less stingy than Cole with an opponents slash line of .188 BA/ .220 OBP/ .621 OPS. The Astros have the best 1-2 punch in the majors and that trend continued in August.

Last Month. Verlander and Cole tied and no runner up was awarded.

Positional Player of the Month.  In a month of great performances by the Astro individuals, Alex Bregman was the best. He combined a .404 BA/ .487 OBP/ 1.235 OPS with an outstanding 27 runs scored, 14 doubles, 6 homers and 31 RBIs. He has lifted that mid .260 BA to within shouting distance of .300.

Runner-up.  You Pick ’em. Is it Yuli Gurriel slashing .344 BA/ .423 OBP/ 1.101 OPS with 7 HRs and 29 RBIs? How about Michael Brantley hitting .378/ .431/ 1.033? Jose Altuve with a one month club record of 32 runs scored, 9 HRs, and 20 RBIs? How about super youngster Yordan Alvarez with a .309 BA/ .425 OBP/ 1.095 OPS with 23 runs scored, 9 HRs and 26 RBIs?

Last Month. Yuli Gurriel was the winner and Jose Altuve and Michael Brantley tied for the runner-up spot.

Relief Pitcher of the Month. Will Harris. This was another month with a dearth of good relief pitching performances. But Harris in 12 games was 1-0 with a save, a 1.64 ERA, and a 0.545 WHIP. Opponents hit a miniscule .088 BA/ .162 OBP/ .427 OPS against the former LSU Tiger.

Runner-up.  Joe Smith. Smith was good and pitched in a club leading 15 games for the Astros in August. His 2.03 ERA and 1.050 WHIP were quite solid along with allowing only a .229 BA/ .275 OBP/ .650 OPS against.

Last Month – The winner was Joe Smith and Chris Devenski was the runner-up.

Biggest Surprise (Positive). Wade Miley. Not sure how positive this is; it may depend on your point of view. Miley was a team-leading 4-0 with a very good 3.07 ERA. How he did this with an awful 1.636 WHIP and a nasty .293 BA/ .366 OBP/ .815 OPS against is a real head-scratcher.

Runner Up. N/A.

Last Month – Yuli Gurriel was the winner with Yordan Alvarez as the Runner-up

Biggest Disappointment. Roberto Osuna. He is on the other side of the Miley surprise. How did a guy with an excellent 0.889 WHIP and a .194 BA/ .257 OBP/ .709 OPS against end up with a 5.00 ERA?

Runner-up. Josh Reddick. He continued his second half slide with another poor month of hitting. He has not hit a homer since June. In August, he hit an anemic .213 BA/ .268 OBP/ .562 OPS and was the worst hitter in the lineup.

The amazing stats award.

  • Justin Verlander showed unbelievable control in August striking out 47 hitters and only walking 3.
  • Joe Biagini had a mediocre 4.22 ERA, while putting up terrible 1.875 WHIP and allowing hitters to pound him for a .357 BA/ .426 OBP/ .949 OPS. How did he do this? He toted up 5 double-play grounders in 10.2 innings of pitching.
  • The Astros had five hitters who had as many or more walks than strikeouts and none of them were named Michael Brantley (with a still good 8 walks/9 Ks). Yuli (12/11), Carlos Correa (14/13), Bregman (15/11), Aledmys Diaz (6/6) and Abraham Toro (5/4) were all on the good side of hitting eyes in August.

Anyway, bottom line, do you agree with these awards?

Want to propose awards of your own?

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90 comments on “August ChipalattAwards for a winning month

  1. i want to go back to the last post and a comment by becky. she said bregman had made a new friend in greinke. if this is true and bregman brings greinke out of his tendency to be, well lets say moody, that will be a great thing for him and perhaps his career. this is the kind of information i seldom see from the ‘professional’ writers. kudos to becky for the info. staying in theme for this post perhaps becky should get a chipallatAward for scooping the scoopers!

    Liked by 2 people

    • “Interesting,”as in how the Ump nearly bumps into Sierra, then stands there and STARES at the plate? That was the most blatant signal to the other team that he’d rule the runner out if they stopped play, first of all. Not an impartial arbiter.

      And secondly, it was so marginally close and a Minor League game– my goodness, these guys are paid pennies commensurate with the work they put in — the stuff of “dreams,” for Sierra, and this Ump who nobody gives a care about his name, wants you to know his. What a jack a**.

      I hope Quad Cities, Brett Daniels (*GS#36) overcomes, as they should in this series. They have awesome pitching, but only a rag tag bunch of hitters, since most of the good ones got promoted to Fay’ville and CC. The River Bandits dominated the Midwest League in the 1st half.

      *I have ranked the prospects, independent of MiLB Callis, and others.

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    • I’ve been looking forward for a year for Bielak, and six months for Javier. Opens the door for James Urquidy Valdez and Perez to weigh heavily in the bullpen mix, as well.

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  2. I did want to say something about runners in scoring position.

    Astros all the time – .274 BA / .350 OBP/ .480 SLG/ .846 OPS
    Astros Runners in scoring position – .267 BA/ .349 OBP/ .497 SLG/ .846

    They basically hit with runners in scoring position a lot like they hit all the time.
    They are not a bottom dweller here – they are 4th in the AL in BA with runners in scoring position/ 5th in OBP/ 3rd in SLG and OPS
    They do fail quite a bit with RISP, but they have a ton of opportunities. I’m not saying they are great with RISP, but they are not bottom feeders either

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  3. Trying to talk through this if anyone wants to know the $64,000 question like me?

    Astros 5-game series vs Twins. Yanks rather easy schedule remain.

    Oct. 4, 5th, 7th and 8th, Game 5 on Oct. 10.
    JV, Cole, Miley, Greinke, JV? What is your rotation?

    Next, if it is only 4 starters needed, that leaves 7. Or, 8 pitchers left.

    If it is 7, who are they (in order to get extra bench bat)?

    My depth chart
    Osuna, Harris, James, Valdez, Rondon, Urquidy, Smith, *Bielak, *Javier, Devo, Biagini, Perez (Pressly McHugh week-to-week).

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    • Hats off to a relentless Oakland team. This group of Athletics just won’t quit. They just came back from a 6-1 deficit in the bottom of the 7th to score 7 [so far] and steal the big lead from the Angels. And next, they get four easy games vs. Detroit [one being the completion of a suspended game they already lead 5-3] while we play Seattle. They will almost certainly win today and all 4 vs. the lowly Tigers. That means our Correa-less, Springer-less offense had better make some mighty big, long-awaited noise against the Seattle Mariners.

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  4. SO, Sanchez to 60 day, Guduan released. That opens 2 40 man spots. I really wouldn’t be surprised if Colin is done for the year as well.

    We will see at least one minor league arm nit currently on the 40 man very soon.

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  5. Well……what away to start this game. I doubt Wade will make it out of the top of the first. Done before our guys even get a bat. (((WOW))).

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  6. My god. Just in from dinner & we’re down 5-0 in the 1st. Wade has struggled the past few gms. Stinky timing we’ll have to battle through with pitching in flux as well.

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  7. Oh tomorrow is gonna suck big time. If Framber gets rocked early we are ****** with a capital F (for Framber….see what I did there?)

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  8. Thank you Uncle Mike. That’s how you take those 1st pitch strikes right down the pipe and jack it out the park. Ain’t got to look at’em every time!

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  9. Welcome to the latest remake of the movie ‘True grit’. This episode stars Julia Morales as ‘Mattie Ross’, Josh Reddick as ‘LeBoeuf’, and Uncle Mike Brantley as ‘Rooster Cogburn’. The part of depressed villain ‘Frank Chaney’ is, of course, played by a multitude of Seattle Mariner pitchers. The story is the greatest news to ever hit Dardanelle, Yell County.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. As the great philosopher, Yogi Berra used to say, “It ain’t over till it’s over”. Watching these types of games is like watching my retirement account. One minute it’s up and the next minute it’s down. I have to go to the store today to replenish my supply of Tums and maybe a trip to the doctor for some anxiety medication.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Mr. Bill are you at Dardanelle in Arkansas? I worked for Arkansas Power & Light (now Entergy) for 7 years in the 80’s and spent a bunch of my time in Russellville at the nuke plant. Good people, beautiful state.

    Lots of heroes last night:
    – Urquidy with 4 strong innings to give them time to get back in the game
    – Osuna with 1 and a third to hold the fort
    – James gave up the 1 run but was bailed out and got the win with his second clean inning
    – Sneed gave up 2 runs, but he also put out the fire in the first and got them three innings along
    – Young Mr. Tucker had his first dinger and added in a clutch RBI in extra innings to keep the game going
    – Brantley, who was like on an 0 for 18 if I heard right tied the game in the 8th and walked it off later
    – Reddick may not be able to fill Springer’s shoes, but he certainly filled his pants last night – 3 hits and a walk

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    • Dan, I am not in Dardanelle, but I did, for a time, play ball at a high school that faced their boys [the ‘Sand Lizards’, as I recall] annually in baseball, football, basketball, and track. When Kim Darby played the role of Mattie in the John Wayne version of ‘True Grit’, she introduced herself to Sheriff Cogburn as ‘Mattie Ross, from Dardanelle, Yell County’. Sheriff Cogburn served the Western District of Arkansas, which included Yell County, so she was advising him of both his jurisdiction and his responsibility as Sheriff to help her find her father’s killer. I loved the way the phrase ‘Dardanelle, Yell County’ rolled off the precarious Ms. Darby – er, Ms. Ross’ – tongue.

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      • Of course, Dan, when I was doing time in Arkansas baseball fields I also faced the powerful Russelville Cyclone, the Atkins Red Devils, the Clarksville Panthers, the Paris Eagles, the Ozark Outlaws, the FortSmith Southside Rebels and Northside Grizzlies, and the Mulberry Yellowjackets. What a motley crew of adversaries they were compared to the lowly Sand-Lizards!

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      • I suppose I could have mentioned the Conway Wampus Cats, the Alma Airdales or the Winslow Squirrels, but those mascots don’t exactly strike fear in the hearts of anyone.

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      • Well I remember that in the movie Christmas Vacation the Griswold family seemed terrified by the Squirrel in their Christmas tree – so maybe they are more fierce than we believe.

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  12. Yeah, Urquidy is my unlikely hero for the night. I know the regular hero’s are always ready to step up.
    I sure hope Tucker builds on his night. We don’t win that one without him either.
    Josh James is suddenly a very key pen guy.
    So can Framber, Cionel and Devenski go nine and give us a win tonight? I don’t even know what the rules are in bringing someone else in at this point. Armenteros?
    In the business of baseball category, Carlos is focusing on his future with a new agency. I think the Houston relationship is winding down. And I think he’s gone this winter.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Remember that they did not play on Wednesday, so they could bring back Smith and Biagini today too. James, Urquidy and Sneed are burned. Not sure about Osuna and his 1.1 IP, but you would probably bring him in only in a closer game.
      They could bring up anyone on the 40 man – Armenteros, Deetz, Abreu and even Martes.
      They have two open spots on the 40 man after putting Sanchez on the 60 day and letting Guduan go – I don’t know if the rules allow them to add to the 40 man after Sept.1 and bring those guys up – I think they could but anyone added after Sept 1 would not be eligible for the playoffs (not really needed).

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    • Lot’s of guys contributing last night and proud of all of them. It’s not everyday that you come back from a 7-0 deficit to win it.
      As to the CC comment, I suspect that he’s thinking that Altuve, Bregman, JV, are getting the 30MM salaries and if we’re smart Springer will probably get that too. That doesn’t leave much for him so he’s looking at his options. Personally, I’m with you on thinking he’ll be gone sooner if not later and is probably not in the long term plans for the team. We have options in the minors and we probably could get a pretty good haul for him, even now with his “injury syndrome”. Just curious on which teams he might be targeting.

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    • you think he is traded daveb? cuz he isnt a free agent for a couple of more years. i dont believe he is gonna be gone. i think the team values him a lot more than many in here do.

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      • rj, no doubt he’s highly valued, he’s a great talent. But if he does not fit into the team concept our organization strives for, then I think Luhnow would move him. And who knows, he might be more valuable in November after a solid post season than he could be in May if he’s back on the injured list. As a fan, my thoughts are all conjecture. Carlos might be loved in the clubhouse. Luhnow might well hold on to him as long as he can. But I’m ready to move on.

        Liked by 2 people

  13. My pc broke. This phone is it. Did not give them a chance after 2 innings but watched the whole thing. Called Mike’s homer and the first pitch fastball. Finally someone swings at the first pitch meatball.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Agree with you 1OP. How many guys did we see take the 1st pitch right down the middle and then swing at stuff out of the zone. It’s time to Ambush these pitchers. Then they’ll stop doing it. They mentioned it last night with Bregman at the plate that he was probably looking for something off speed, but the opposing pitchers are throwing more 1st pitch fastballs than off speed. Like good pitchers keeping batters off balance, good hitters can do the same and the results will speak for themselves. Springer does this more than anybody which is one of the reasons why he has so many leadoff home runs.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Just to address Dan’s earlier comment re: 40 man roster and playoff eligibility.

    It is true that a player must be added prior to the 11:50 PM, August 31st deadline to be eligible for the playoff roster. However, if a club wants to add a player who was not on the 40-man roster but was in the organization, it can petition the Commissioner’s Office if that player is replacing someone who has been on the 60-day DL for at least 60 days.

    Not sure how the Astros could play it, but it is conceivable that they could jockey things around and at least petition the league to get an arm added if needed.

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  15. Last night’s comeback win was the most inspiring piece of baseball this team has played all year. There is nothing that builds comradery in a team AND fires up a fan base like a massive come-back win in which everybody on the team [well, except Wade Miley :)] contributes/participates. Let’s take that momentum, get Springer, Pressley, and Correa back, and roll!

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    • I truly believe that Mr. Bill – some of this team’s best baseball over the years was inspired by some late night heroics, walk-offs, impossible comebacks – like when they came back from like 5 runs down to the A’s with no one on in the ninth and two outs – it is so inspirational

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  16. Since I missed the 1st few innings of last nite’s gm I watched it all later, awesome comeback. Bit nails to the quick praying for comebacker & was rewarded. Miley has been spiraling downward lately, Blum & TK mentioned he needs to pick it up.
    There is a SS on the north side of Chi-Town I’d love to see in Orange & Blue less his swing & miss. Once the Stros extend GS, maybe GC, CC will bolt. They will get a nice haul for him either way.
    I wrote on Verlander post A-Breg is perfecting his craft, a perennial AS & future HOF barring… when GS learns to get out his own head he should be in MVP conversations for yrs like he was earlier this season

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  17. Zanuda, I don’t think anyone takes more 1st pitch down the pipe than YA. I (we) would love to see him ambush more of those pitches. His 3 HR parade came on the heels of 2 HR off zone strikes I believe. P no longer give him that low pitch he likes to crush & now he’s struggling with high heat, mid out SO. He’ll adjust at some point.

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  18. One thing to add about Miley though. He’s been remarkable all year. And he hung in the dugout I think all the way through the 12th inning last night. Most guys getting pounded like that head straight for the clubhouse steps when they come off the mound, not to be seen again for the night. I like Wade.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. I listened to the game last night….even my no fan of baseball husband did! ESPN showed the walk off……..I think I watched it about 100 times! A few weeks ago our guys would have folded like a fan in a game like that. EVERY GAME COUNTS…let’s hope the guys continue play like it counts!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Damn, Framber has great stuff, but he sure makes the whole game a discombobulated mess. He still might be one of our favorite guys one day though.

    I like honest Abe more and more.

    If Reddick really decides to wake up for the stretch run, that’s good news for
    us.

    Like

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