Despite losing two of their best three offensive players during the month (Carlos Correa and George Springer) and despite having to deal with shorter starting pitching stints for replacement starters and returning starters and despite having some really crummy bullpen support, the Astros finished the month of July with a 15-9 record. That would be on pace for 101 wins for the season.
How did they perform so well as a team in July? Historic offensive numbers is the answer. The team put up a .323 BA/.380 OBP/.948 OPS for the month. This would be like having a whole team perform like Marwin Gonzalez has performed in 2017 for the whole month. According to Tuesday night’s broadcast that .948 OPS for the month of July is the highest number for a team for a month…..ever.
Now pitching? Well that’s another story. Anyway, here are the ChipalattAwards for the Month of July.
Player of the Month. Jose Altuve.
This one was obvious to anyone who watched the team during July. Jose Altuve seemed to be on first base more often than the opposing first basemen. .485 BA – look out Ted Williams!! .523 on base. 1.251 OPS. 22 runs scored/10 doubles/4 HRs/ 20 RBIs in 23 games. You may never see a month to rival this again in your life.
Runners up. Carlos Correa and George Springer.
Imagine if they had a whole month of Correa or Springer doing that thing they do.
In 10 games Carlos scored 9 runs, hit 4 HRs and knocked in 14 runs with a .417/.500/1.333 slash.
In 18 games George scored 19 runs and knocked in 14 with a .403/.456/1.083 slash.
Starting Pitcher of the Month. Brad Peacock.
In his four starts for the month he was 3-0 with a 2.05 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP. Oh…and he would have undoubtedly been 4-0 in his starts but he was only allowed to pitch three innings in the Astros’ rain delayed 13-4 win over the Phillies. Oh…and he came in when Dallas Keuchel struggled in his first game back from the DL and threw four solid innings of relief and earned a fourth win for the month. And we want him out of the starting rotation, why?
Runners up. Mike Fiers and Charlie Morton.
Fiers had the better ERA at 2.89 and gave them a shot in his starts despite the 2-2 record. Morton came off the DL and was 4-1 with a 3.23 ERA and a 0.946 WHIP. His .165 BA against and .258 OBP against were standouts. So Morton is Runner up 1 and Fiers 1A.
Reliever of the Month. Ken Giles.
In a month where the offensive show did not allow for that many save opportunities, Giles hit his stride with very strong pitching. His 1.23 ERA and 0.682 WHIP were strong but the .130 BA /.192 OBP / .366 OPS against were microscopic. He walked two batters during the month, gave up 0 HRs and interestingly struck out less than one batter per inning, which really did not matter. Throw in his four saves and he was just so good in July.
Runner up. This space for rent.
Except for two scoreless innings out of rookie Reymin Guduan, no other reliever in the Astros bullpen had an ERA below 4.00 for the month and that matches the eye test that the fans took during the month…..
Lone Wolf Award. Brian McCann.
McCann’s hitting line for the month (.169/.258/.597) was in another world from the rest of the team and it was not a good world. For the 13 main hitters for the month of July, the next worst BA was .268 (Jake Marisnick), OBP .318 (Josh Reddick) and OPS .749 (Carlos Beltran). Those are all in another zip code.
In a Limited Role Award. Tie Evan Gattis and Derek Fisher.
Gattis was an under the radar main contributor to the great offensive month for the Astros. In only 15 games, he scored 11 runs, hit 6 HRs and had 14 RBIs along with a very sweet .322 BA and 1.060 OPS. Mr. Fisher looked like anything but a rookie in 6 July games as his .348/.423/1.032 made guys like Nori Aoki and Teoscar Hernandez look expendable.
The Hope It Is Because Of An Injury Award. Lance McCullers Jr., Michael Feliz and Tony Sipp.
The threesome has seen better days than what happened in July and all three are currently on the DL.
Sipp. In 10 games (shows how many games the Astros were murdering the opposition) 12.46 ERA and 1.846 WHIP along with .316 BA/ .372 OBP/1.214 OPS against
LMJ. In four starts, 0-2 record, 9.64 ERA, 2.304 WHIP and…. .386 BA/.480 OBP/.950 OPS against
Feliz. Over the Lucas Harrell line with a 10.57 ERA, 2.870 WHIP and yikes .421 BA/.489 OBP/1.357 OPS against
Comeback of the Month Award. Alex Bregman.
Not that he was playing that poorly before, but Bregman was a big performer on the field even as his tweeting skills were getting him in trouble off the field. In July he had 24 runs scored, 11 doubles, 3 HRs and an excellent .329/.413/1.021.
The Taken for Granted Award. Marwin Gonzalez.
If he was on almost any other team his month would have been the big focus. Here he is just one of the guys despite scoring 17 runs, hitting seven doubles and six HRs and knocking in 18 runs. His .307/.378/.978 slash? How pedestrian….
So, it’s your turn. What do you want to award to whom? What do you agree or disagree with above?