Archive for the ‘Lucas Harrell’ Category

4/2/13: Lance Berkman Beats Astros And Marwin Singles 2 Outs Bottom Of The 9th To Save Them From Yu Know Who

Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013

Well, the 2013 Astros ARE a really lousy team. Yu Darvish carved em up through 8.2 – 14 K and no walks, and then Marwin Gonzalez sent a single through Yu’s legs to break it up and there it was.

Whenever there is a no hitter, MLB.com gives a free live broadcast so the whole world can watch the end of a nono. Well, except for Houston, that is – stupid blackout.

Lucas Harrell pitched great – 6 innings, 6 hits, 1 walk 1 run, and got a loss for his trouble. He’s used to that. The 1 run was courtesy of Berkman, naturally, who hit an outside FB through the 5.5 hole with bases loaded to drive in the winning run. Berkman is hitting like crazy. Hasn’t driven a ball into the RF bullpen or restaurant, but it’s coming, you’ll see. The rest of the runs were gravy because Darvish was unhittable. At least for our AAAA guys.

All yall need to go to the mlb.com and look at their videos – watch Carter try to think of getting Nelson Cruz’ ball hit near the LF bullpen and you’ll understand what I mean when I say that he makes Clank Lee look like a Gold Glover. And when Wesley Wright gave up an easy FB to Carter with a man on third, Carter couldn’t field it for spit – took a wrong angle, couldn’t catch it so that he would be coming in for it, positioned to throw home, because the runner should NOT have scored, and wouldn’t have had the fielder had a league average glove or arm. Sorry.

Xavier Cedeno can’t get rightys out and needs to be a LOOGY only.

I guess this year’s Stros gonna have the reliever blues again – can’t nobody besides Erik Bedard relieve without letting runs score.

The good part is that both Altuve and Marwin made some really awesome plays. Still don’t understand why Marwin was not the starting SS. It’s not that Cedeno is any better. Carlos Pena is a better glove at first than Brett Wallace, who was at third tonight. Shudder. Fortunately, he didn’t have to field at all. I guess they’ve decided to platoon almost everyone except Carter and Maxwell. Don’t ask me to explain Carter, because I can’t.

10/1/12: In Which Astros Shut Out Cubs To Welcome Them To The 100 Loss Club

Monday, October 1st, 2012

Lucas Harrell managed to fix whatever had been going wrong for him in the first inning – he gave up a leadoff single, no surprise, then a groundout, a K, a WP and another GO. And that was his ONLY bad inning. He gave up a leadoff double in the 4th, but otherwise got 1,2,3 innings AND withoug any double plays (like Lyles) or any necessary spectacular plays. AND he threw to Jason Castro – something he doesn’t like doing. So it’s was 6 innings of 2 hit, 1 walk, 1 WP 7 K ball.

Good to go out on such a strong outing – this way, you don’t get told to “get bigger and stronger” over the winter. Guys don’t put on 30 lbs of muscle in 3 months any more.

Jose Valdez pitched a 1,2,3 7th. Froddy came in for the 8th, got 2 Ks, then he was pulled for Wesley Wright who was supposed to face a lefty, but he was pulled and a righty was sent in and Wesley got him out anyhow.

AND WESLEY WRIGHT PITCHED THE 9th for his first ML save since he first came up in 2008. Hard to believe that he and Bud Norris are now the veterans on the team.

How kewl is that???!!! And it was a 1.1 inning save, too. Francie-poo obviously hasn’t read The Book By Managers or he’d know that that just isn’t DONE these days. Prolly why he’s getting his ass thrown out at the end of the year.

As for hitters, Fernando Martinez hit a solo homer over the RF bleachers onto Waveland Avenue. He also singled and came home on Matt Dominguez’ triple to the LF corner – THAT’S a triple, you say? Yeah, because the third baseman barely got a glove on it, so it slowed down and Sori, who was shaded way over to center, had to run a long way to get it.

Brandon Barnes also got in on the run scoring fun in the 8th – singled, went to second on a GO then came home on Scott Moore’s single up the middle. I just luuuuvvv watching that boy. Magic glove, and a good runner. There is no way I can be made to believe that Mary Jane Schafer is more talented. NO WAY. He got that rep on ONE good year in the low minors and has, for some unknown reason, been carrying it ever since.

Tomorrow is Bud Norris’ last game and let’s hope he really nails it. He needs a good ending to this year, too.

(Sorry short entry – kid trouble tonight)

9/25/12: Astros Achieve Loss #105 By Getting Shut Out By The Cardinals

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

So Wandy was handed a 4 run lead by the end of the first inning and although he gave up 3 runs with a single then 2 homers before he recorded an out, he shut it DOWN giving up only 2 more walks and a single over the next 6 innings as the curve really curved and

oops

wrong team.

Where was I?

Oh yeah. The Lastros. Only 2 more games to tie last year’s record!!! WE CAN DO IT!!! 110 here we come!!!!!

Lucas Harrell lost again, poor guy – NO run support thanks to endless double plays. The Astros DID turn 2 very nice DPs, too, especially (I can’t believe it) the 3-2-3 Matt Downs to Chris Snyder on Carlos Beltran – I’d better not say he looks worn OUT or he’s gonna turn into Carlos 2004 before our eyes tomorrow. Saint Looey is ahead for the second WC by 2 games and the Crew must be gritting their teeth.

Lucas has actually pitched very well since the ASB, with only one bad game. He has very little in the way of W to show for it. Check it out:

1 ER/5 IP -ND
1 ER/7 IP – L
1 ER/7 IP – ND
2 ER/5.2 IP – W
2 ER/6 IP – W
2 ER/ 5 IP – L
1 ER/8 IP – W
6 ER = ick and well deserved L
1 ER/7 IP – ND
1 ER/ 7 IP – ND
3 ER/6 IP – ND
4 R/5.2 IP – ND
3 ER/5.2 IP – L
2 ER/5 IP – L

That is NINE games that, if he had had league average run support (and non-suckage bullpen) he should have won. Welcome to the Astros.

He had a tough time with this game, in spite of Snyder catching him again – gave up 7 hits and SIX walks (including an IBB) and only 2 runs, as he left bases loaded 3 times and had only one 1,2,3 inning. He even gave up a double to the PITCHER.

Jose Altuve had his 50th multi-hit game tonight. Our other major leaguer (besides Harrell and Wesley Wright.)

There is not much else to say.  Unfortunately.

Tomorrow is The Last Game. It’s hard not to cry, but after all, there is no crying in baseball…

 

9/19/12: Astros Are Shutout On Joe Morgan’s Birthday

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

Loss # 101 – and second road loss in a row – only 7 more to go for the record!!!!!

Lucas Harrell had his third loss in a row, and THIS time, he had his favorite catcher back, so he can’t blame Castro for not blocking anything. It was Lucas his own self threw a luscious meaty 3-2 FB to the EXACT same spot that Freese had fouled off the previous pitch to give the Cards a 2-0 lead they never relinquished. And it was Lucas his own self threw a 3-1 FB RIGHT down the exact middle of the plate to Yadi Molina for a 3-0 lead.

Anyone who saw Yadi hitting back in 06 (53 OPS+ and a .583 OPS) ever think he would be a .300 hitter just 2 years later? Anyone ever imagine he would have a 140 OPS+ at age 30? I know I sure didn’t. Youneverknow.

Where was I? Oh yeah. The game.

Now Lucas could sure nuff be ticked off at his teammates for not hitting for spit, for leaving Altuve and his leadoff double on second, and for Brandon Laird leaving men on first and second in the 4th. (WHY exactly did we pick him up offn waivers? Oh yeah – he can play third.) Also for Altuve leaving a man on second with 2 outs in the 5th.

But he should thank Ambriz for getting the third out in the 6th when he left men on first and third.

Guess Lucas is getting tired – it’s the end of the year and he’s well over 30 innings more than he’s ever pitched before, including last year. It’s OK, he’s helping the Astros reach the goal of The Sacred All Time Road Loss Record.

It’s not that Lucas was not pitching well – he gave up 5 hits, 1 walk, 1 ROE, 7 K over 5.2 IP. It’s that Lance Lynn was absolutely shutDOWN. Guess those 2 weeks of rest in the bullpen got him back on track because he looked like he did at the beginning of the year. Loading the lineup with leftys didn’t do a BIT of good.

Tomorrow, it’s Bud Norris, former Cards killah, vs Jaime Garcia, who I thought would be the Cards ace this year, but he’s struggled with injuries. Jaime has a 2 something ERA at home this year, but has a lifetime losing record vs the Astros, for some reason. He has a 8.10 ERA – which is really tough to believe, but there you go.

Poor Bud – he just hasn’t been able to buy himself a W since MAY – when he got hurt. He’s pitched well, pitched OK, pitched lousy, and STILL can’t buy himself a W. He’s turning into Anthony Young (Yes, ex-Stro, but his days of infamy were with the Mets.)

I can’t find any info on anyone else interviewing for manager – or who the “mystery” candidate is supposed to be or even IF there really IS a mystery candidate.  Probably Alan Trammel – he knows ALL about how it is to manage a 100+ loss team year after year. And scapegoated, to boot. Just like Millsie-poo.

9/13/12: Astros Come Back In The 8th To Beat Phillies

Thursday, September 13th, 2012

I just inadvertently deleted this entire entry and am too tired to retype the whole thing, so here are the highlights:

1 – Lucas Harrell had a really lousy game – 7 hits, FIVE walks, 1 WP and 4 ER over 5.1 IP. He got hisself tossed. I thought it was for arguing balls and strikes, but apparently, Francie-poo had already decided to pull him. And the ump hadn’t been butchering the strike zone, neither – it was Lucas who couldn’t find it.

2 – Wesley Wright got the W – his first this year. Kind of nice present considering how well he has usually pitched. Cedeno, Ambriz and Wilton-ie didn’t give up any runs, though, as usual, Wiltie-poo didn’t get a 1,2,3 save, but he sure did get a very nice 3-6-1 GIDP to end the game.

3 – Brandon Barnes had another 10 pitch AB today, had 2 singles, and has gotten his average up to .222 and hopefully, he will start hitting a LOT better. I like him a LOT better than Fernando Martinez – at least he can field and throw. I don’t get the front office obsession with him. Or Jimmy Paredes neither, who made another stupid error in RF (ball rolled under his glove) and another lousy throw – tired to get the runner at home, missed by a lot.

4 – Matt Dominguez hit another 3 run homer into the CBoxes. He’s 15 fer 53 with 3 walks, 1 double, 1 triple and 4 homers. Really. At AAA, he had a .708 OPS over 848 PA. 21 homers, total. Well, sometimes it really DOES happen that guys come up to the majors, and hit better Up Here than they did Down There. Youneverknow

5 – Brett Wallace is ofer his last 4 games.

6 – Jed Lowrie hit the go ahead double near the RF bullpen – they weren’t expecting him to go opposite field at ALL. He’s lookin like he must might bring something good in a trade. Cmon, you can’t believe they’ll keep a guy who would earn over 500 K a year, do you?

Tomorrow, new ace Edgar Gonzalez faces lefty Cole Hamels, who, believe it or not, has a lifetime 5.05 ERA vs Houston. He has had only 4 good starts against Houston since he first came up in 06: 7 IP, giving up 1-2 runs. The rest have been lousy. So be it and shall it remain…

9/7/12: The Astros Beat Aroldis Chapman!! I Don’t Believe It – The Astros Beat Aroldis Chapman!!!

Friday, September 7th, 2012

This was even better than Brian Bogusevic’s walk off homer last year against Astro killer Carlos Marmol.

Lucas Harrell pitched OK – 4 walks (1 IBB to Votto, a sound decision) and 7 hits, 3 earned runs over 6 IP, and he was on the hook for yet another loss due to crappy run support. And Jose Altuve, the best hitter had long since left the lineup with a pulled muscle – rib?

Homer Bailey had pitched 6.2 good innings, giving up 5 hits and a walk, working around 2 errors, and giving up only 2 runs on his only bad pitch of the night – a homer to dead center for Justin Maxwell.

Then lefty Sean Marshall mowed em down. Then righty Jonathan Broxton mowed em down.

Then it was the second best closer in the NL (sorry Kimbrel of the Braves is the best – over half the batters facing him have struck out. Not even Brad Lidge or Billy Wags did that) and his 100 MPH FB.

I almost shut the game off, told Husband – cmon boy, it’s just another 5 minutes, how could that matter? You wanna bet on whether he gets 3 Ks on 9 pitches? After all, it’s the bottom of the lineup – Snyder, Greene and some pinch hitter. Husband rolls eyes, sighs, sits down.

So Snyder fouls out to the catcher. Then mirabla dictu (it’s French and means, you ain’t gonna believe THIS) Greene hits the ball awkwardly and hits one of those popups into shallow right that can’t no fielder get. Then pinch hitter Julio Daniel Martinez does the same thing, only to left. Hey, this kind of stuff happens, remember The Mariano getting singled to defeat by Luis Gonzalez Game 7 WS 2001?

And then folks, then, it’s Matt Dominguez, not known for either power or average in the minors. And Chapman throws him two belt high 98 MPH fastballs and Dominguez hits the second one over the left center fence. No I am not kidding. That is the first home run Chapman has given up since June 24 – also the first blown save/loss since then. And to the worst team in baseball having one of the worst seasons since the beginning of the 162 game season. Actually, since the beginning of the lively ball era. How humiliating.

But hey, it’s baseball and youneverknow and even the really good ones have off days where little popups fall in and then you get mad and figure some crappy AAA hitter can’t hit no 98 MPH FB. But like Barry Lamar once said – it ain’t the speed, it’s the motion and guys can hit a straight flat FB even if it IS 98 – 100 MPH and that FB was bout as straight and flat as flat can be and it was GONE.

Matt gonna treasure that like JR Towles treasures the 2 homers he hit offn Pedro Martinez in the same game.

Wilton Lopez gave up an infield hit to short, then got a GIDP. Then a single to Brandon Phillips that he couldn’t get, then a groundout to short.

And the Astros lose the race to 120 by getting their 43rd W. Third W in September. What is it with these guys, don’t they have no pride? And they’d better stay on their toes and miss  balls because the C*bs are keeping up with our suckage, they looked worse than BAD to the Nats (including their little temper tantrum in the 5th where they made fools of themselves throwing at Bryce Harper who hadn’t done anything not OK. Well, except hit. And run. And field. And make them look like Astros.)

And hat tip to Chris Snyder for the DP in the 5th – Lucas had loaded the bases AGAIN, 1 out. Todd Frazier up – he had thoughtfully GIDP to take Lucas out of a bases loaded jam in the first. So Frazier hits the ball back to Lucas, who throws home to get the lead runner. Snyder is gonna throw to first, but then notices that Ludwick is way too far off 3rd and he throws to Dominguez, who tags Ludwick, who has slipped trying to get back. VERY nice. Really good fielding, very heads up, something we haven’t seen much of this year.

Tomorrow, it’s Bud Norris vs Bronson Arroyo. Bud, if I’m not mistaken, has the best home ERA in the NL  of all starting pitchers at 1.90. We all know that no matter HOW he pitches, he can’t buy a W – none since May, when he got hurt. Arroyo has kept his foot on Astros’ necks this year (not sure what happened to him last year, but youneverknow…) so hopefully, the boyz will win one for Bud.

OMG

What am I SAYING???

Old habits die hard…

p.s. Coco Cordero is now officially out for the year with a, um, a strained/sprained ERA. I mean toe. I mean shoulder. I mean back. Or something…

9/1/12: Wilson Valdez Pulls A Buckner To Gift Astros With A Walk-off Win

Saturday, September 1st, 2012

Missed the Friday game – forgot to record it and haven’t had time to mlb.tv it yet but I see that Fernando Abad kept to the fine Astros tradition of suckage by giving up a 3 run homer to Jay Bruce on a fat one down the middle after the Astros had managed to hit 2 solo homere back to back to tie the game. After the Bruce homer, as usual, the boyz packed it in. Not that I blame them.

In the news – Luhnow has hired Kevin Goldstein, who is a BLOGGER. Yes friends and neighbors and 2 dozen remaining Astros fans, you read that right. He first worked for Baseball America talkin bout prospects, then moved to Baseball Prospectus, doing the same thing. He has been given the job as head of pro scouting – meaning, I guess, that the Astros want the same dishy stuff on other teams prospects that he’s been writing up for BPro. All my statty friends are all agog. We’re like Billy Beane 10 years later, I guess, only without Hudson, Mulder and Zito.

I still can’t figure how this here team is gonna be competitive for years. The new CBA basically doesn’t allow spending for prospects, foreign or domestic and got rid of all the compensation picks – well, practically all of them. Unless a team gets lucky, REALLY lucky 3 or 4 years in a row, I don’t see how any team could get itself out of the basement. Then again, I DO know that spending on, and apparently getting, good prospects sure nuff doesn’t guarantee success. See Royals, KC.

Also, I keep reading that next year’s payroll is supposed to be 50 mill. Not sure where on earth THAT figure comes from. The only arb eligible players are Crystal Lowrie and Bud Norris. And won’t neither one of em make more than 1 or 2 million. Everyone else is minimum wage. I don’t even see 20 mill. I supposed they’ll have to do something about getting a bullpen whose members can do these things called getting outs and not giving up runs. I supposed they’ll have to hire a bunch of el cheapo FA because good players aren’t gonna come to a last place team. And also because teams have begun doing the John Hart thing of giving long contracts under market value to young players and there aren’t really any top FA any more.

Which reminds me – I keep hearing about how wonderful it is for the Astros to have shed all that salary and all I can say is, like why? It’s not like they’re spending it on DIFFERENT or BETTER players. And they certainly aren’t acquiring more major leaguers and they have already shed the 2 fringe guys they DID get, Ben Francisco (traded for the PTBNL to the Rays) and Steve Pearce. And it’s hard to win facing ML teams without ML players.

Which reminds me – the game. Lucas Harrell gave up 1 run in the first on 2 singles and a sac-fly. He started off the second with the giving up 2 singles again, but got a nice GIDP from the pitcher to end the inning and from there, he just sailed through 5 more innings without much of any trouble – a double here and there and a walk. Trouble was that he didn’t get run support as Astros hitters managed just 3 hits and a walk off Homer Bailey (man he luuuuvs seeing the Stros – almost got his ERA under 4). Justin Maxwell hit a ball off the end of the bat which just made it over the RF fence 340′ is still a homer, to tie the game.

They didn’t get anything going until the 8th – got men on first and second with 1 out, but Paredes, then Greene stranded em.

Hector Ambriz pitched 1,2,3 – got Brandon Phillips on a checked swing K and MAN was Brandon ANGRY – not that I blame him, it was a horsestuff call and he HAD checked his swing, but for once, it went the Astros’ way.

In the 9th, Francie-poo reverted to the ol LOOGY thingy using Xavier Cedeno to get Jay Bruce, then bringing in Wilton-ie to get the rightys. Yes, The Closah in a tie game in the 9th, but this is at home, which makes it OK for some reason.

So then, because it’s a tie game in the 9th and an away game, Dusty Baker sends in Sean Marshall instead of Aroldis Chapman – not a bad idea as he’s suppsoed to face 2 leftys and a crappy righty. So Wallace grounds out and Maxwell Ks, then pinch hitter Matt Downs (yes, Downsie-doo is back, along with Mary Jane Schafer) doubles. So Marshall IBBs Dominguez (seriously, the setup man and his 2.98 ERA can’t get out Matt eff Dominguez? ARE YOU KIDDING ME?) to face Jordan Schafer. Who can’t hit leftys. Or rightys, for that matter. So Brandon Barnes and his sub Mendoza bat bravely comes up to pinch hit, 2 outs in the bottom of the 9th, winning run on second. And is promptly hit by pitch.

So it’s bases loaded, and Jose Altuve, who is supposed to have had the night off, but was brought in to pinch hit in the 8th after all the pinch running substitutions, is up and it’s hero/goat time. And Jose has failed to drive in the winning run without fail (a True Astro) and sure enough, he hits a dead easy grounder at the second baseman, who lets the ball go RIGHT through his legs like Bill Buckner, and there goes the ball game.

Astros win game 41. Which means they can’t win even ONE more game in September if they Want That Sacred All Time Loss Record. At this point, The Media is convinced that we have the #1 pick in the 2013 draft locked up, even though the Cubs are only 10 games behind us and a whole lot of things can happen in September – remember 2004, when we won all but 4 games to get the WC on the last day? Remember last year when the Red Sox and Braves both collapsed like a popped balloon?

It’s baseball and youneverknow.

Oh yeah – Jose Valdez, the pitcher (and his 4.90 ERA at AAA) has been called up – Juan Abreu, one of the guys we got in the Bourn deal last year and his 6+ ERA have been let go.

Tomorrow afternoon, it’s Bud Norris – hope his blister is healed, vs Bronson Arroyo, who we beat back in June. Yes, beat. We won some games in June – before we decided that losing was teh kewl and went 3 fer July and 5 fer August. That’s an amazing suckage, 8 fer 56. Almost unprecedented.

Anyway, AAA should be over soon – the OKC team is 1.5 games behind Albuquerque and has been decimated by the Astros calling up most of their AAAA guys, so their chances of actually winning anything in the postseason isn’t good. But youneverknow. I hope they call up JB Shuck – I like the guy and I’d rather watch him PLAY than watch Fernando Martinez miss easy catches and strike out a lot. But that’s me.

8/26/12: Astros Support 2 Straight Loss To The Mets By “Considering” Starting Pitcher Edgar Gonzalez

Sunday, August 26th, 2012

Might as well have kept Galarraga if all you want is awfulness.

Fernando Abad threw 4 innings of 1 run ball, managing his first Loss as a starter – I’m so PROUD of him, which apparently has guaranteed him a rotation spot for the rest of the year. Francie-poo pinch hit for him with bases loaded 1 out top of the 5th, but Steve Pearce came through and hit into a nice double play to end the threat of runs.

Today, Lucas Harrell made a shameful attempt to win, throwing 7 innings of 2 hit 2 walk ball, giving up only a solo homer to Ike Davis. Altuve, who had the day off, led off the 9th with a single, stole second, Marwin Gonzalez hit a ball down the LF line that was just fair to tie the game. After Brett Wallace lined out, Ben Francisco hit a ball to shallow right and Marwin tried to score from second – could NOT believe StopSign Dave Clark actually waved him around, but he was positively out at the plate – Shoppach blocked the plate and Marwin did NOT get his hand in under the tag. He was mad, he was out, and he was tossed out.

Then Francie-poo broke The Rules and brought in The Closer in a tie game on the road (don’t ask me what that is supposed to be a nono but apparently it is) and Wilton strengthened the bonds of team unity by serving a cookie to Ike Davis who promptly sent it into the RF stands. So I’m sure Francie-poo will hear it from those who thought that he shoulda done the send some righty to face David Wright, then pull him and send in the LOOGY to face Davis. But hey, your closer is suppsoed to be the best reliever on the team. If HE can’t get the heart of the lineup out, well, he sucks.

So anyway, apparently there is Some Concern about innings limits for our young pitchers and Luhnow is talking bout going to a 6 man rotation and calling up Edgar Gonzalez, a 29 year old righty who pitched most of the year in the Mexican League, and 1 game at AAA OKC – former Diamondback, whose last respectable year, as a starter/long reliever, was 2006 when he posted a 113 ERA+ over 42.2 innings. No I am not kidding. Next year, 2007, he had a 95 ERA+ over 102 innings, again as a swingman. You don’t wanna hear the rest of his numbers, because they are all bad.ERA in the majors over 325 IP is 5.90 with a 1.57 WHIP. No I am not kidding. His AAA numbers aren’t much better.

I don’t know about all yall, but I’d rather watch Roger Clemens lose than Gonzalez. I’m really getting a kick out of the old buzzard who will just not say die. Of course, all the writers are screaming how he just wants to pitch in the majors to push his Hall eligibility back 5 years, but hey, they can just not vote for him 5 years later, what’s the big deal?

Day off, then San Fran comes to town. I miss Barry Lamar. Then it’s Cincy. I know it’s gonna be tough maintaining that death grip, but I appreciate the boys tryin so hard. Still at only 40 W, and I understand the tremendous pressure they are under to lose. Sometimes they forget themselves and do stuff like make good plays or hit em where they ain’t, but it’s so tough to remember, it’s only ONE game they can win and still achieve that Sacred All Time Loss Record. I checked, by the way, and On Aug 26, 2003, the Tigers had won only 33 games – and they won 5 of their last 6 to reach 43 wins – and they almost made history too.

It’s true that the all time Road Loss record is still within the Stros’ grasp, but hey, that’s like the Sacred All Time Pinch Hits Record (now held by Lenny Harris, ah do believe.) I’m not even sure it’s still Lenny Harris, as Matt Stairs just might could have caught up.

 

8/21/12: I Hate It When The Game Is Over Before The Second Out Is Made

Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

As I’ve said to a lot of folks I chat with about the Astros, it’s very difficult to win with a team which only has 2 or 3 major leaguers on it, unless the other team trips all over its own feet. Millsie-poo is gone without much of any ado, seeing as how Luhnow cleverly sneaked it in on Saturday night. DeFrancesco-ie or whatever his cutesy-poo nickname is, isn’t gonna do better with THIS bunch. Take tonight’s game – look at the BA in the 2 lineups:

Thems: .308; .310; .301; .309; .294; .321; .303; .267; .120

Weuns: .303; .241; .284; .232; .249; .248; .128; .237; .198 (and the .128 does NOT belong to the pitcher)

You don’t wanna compare OPS, trust me on this.

I heard they were starting Brett Wallace today – no surprise, Wainwright is a righty. I had faint hopes that something might could go right for the Stros with our only ML starting pitcher, Lucas Harrell, on the mound. But I walked in to Mama’s about 10 minutes late and Harrell had already given up a double, GO with runner going to 3rd, a balked in run, 5 straight singles with 4 runs in and only 1 out.

My God, it’s been 10 minutes and the game is already over. I think I’ve told all yall that Mama has divorced the Astros and has converted to her childhood team, the Cards. It’s not about the losing. It’s about Jim Crane selling us down the river and instead of telling Bud Selig to shove it, that no other fool would pay an extra 150 mill for this fustercluck of a team, he took some dough to go to the DH league. Where Nolan Ryan will pound him to kingdom come for decades.

I look at the lineup – anyone worth watching, or anyone I’m curious about? We have Altuve, our ML position player, then Scott Moore (AAAA) then Brett Wallace (we’ll see if this team is serious about seeing if he can play in the majors by whether or not they pull his ass anytime a lefty comes near the mound. If he gets yanked, we’ll know it was Luhnow’s decision, not Millsie-poo. And Brett is gonna be a glorified pinch hitter, if that.) Then Justin Maxwell batting cleanup (jeezus – homer or strikeout and decent glove – a reserve at best). Then Jason Castro ( who is The Future, but can’t catch or throw worth spit – he’d be a backup at best on any other team), then Ben Francisco, who is a 5th OF – at best, then Fernando Martinez, who can’t hit or field (BAD jumps on the ball, inacccurate throws), then Tyler Greene, Cardinals discard, who is at best a utility IF, then Lucas Harrell, who is the only Astros starter with an ERA+ over 100 (it’s 105). Hey, 2 actual major leaguers in the lineup.

Not that it did any good.

When you have a terrible team, and the starter gives up 4 runs before the end of the first inning, the rest of the team packs it in. You can tell, you can read it in their body language. They look like some fat, ugly, pimply, poor guy with bad teeth trying to pick up a cheerleader. Why even try.

Mama sez, he got singled to death, you wanna stay and watch, there’s chicken n biscuits on the stove. She doesn’t rub it in, she’s not like that. Besides, it’s like having a wrestling match between a 200 lb guy and a 105 lb guy. No contest a tall.

Altuve gets the first hit, in the 4th, so it won’t be a no-hitter. You can see Wainwright visibly disappointed.

Geez, what is there to say? They swung and missed a lot, got 5 hits, 1 walk and 12 Ks over Wainwright’s CG?

Well, there’s a lot of Pirates, Royals and 02/03 Tigers fans who managed to stay and watch, so I guess I can last out the season, too.  De Francesco doesn’t have anything more to say than Millsie-poo did. Uh, guess we run into a great pitcher having a good night. Um, yeah. Uh, they boys tried hard and fought em tough blahblahblah.

Tomorrow night, Bud Norris, who just ain’t been the same since he got hurt back in May, faces Kyle Lohse and his 2.61 ERA – and Lohse has been the Cards ace this year. Bud has a rep as a Cards killer, but that hasn’t been true for a while, now and it’s just a question of which inning is it that he’s gonna suddenly lose command and the game.

Folks say – remember 94, when Drayton bought the team, how bad they were? And I say – yeah, but the MAJOR LEAGUE team was full of great young rookies, not AAAA guys and other teams’ rejected 5th OF and utility IF.

sigh

 

8/9/12: Lucas Harrell Gets Zero Run Support And Astros Are Shutout And Swept

Thursday, August 9th, 2012

Lucas Harrell pitched pretty well – had four 1,2,3 innings and gave up 2 runs on the 5th. But the absolute highlight of the game was Michael Morse’s homer offn Mickey Storey in the 6th. All yall remember Albert Pujols infamous moon shot. Well, friends and neighbors, that one was a dribbler compared to Morse’s, which hit the THIRD sign up on that hideous signage that Crane has polluting the Stadium – I mean, this would have been WAAAAYYY over the Citgo sign. I mean, this ball would have sailed out of the ballpark and crashed into the building across the street from the CBoxes. I mean, we are talking about 500+ feet, although I’m sure Mike won’t get credit for that seeing as how that stupid sign was in the way.

Longest homer I’ve ever personally seen hit is still Wily Mo Pena’s 505′ blast offn Brandon Duckworth. Wish I could have seen Jimmy Wynn’s famous homer that he hit in the old Cincy Stadium which bounced onto the freeway right next to the stadium. And they say you have to be large to hit. BAH.

Well Friends and Neighbors and 10 remaining Astros fans/readers of this here blog, ain’t real too much to say about this here game except for – well, no errors. That’s good. No screwed up plays. That’s good. Mickey Storey and Froddy each gave up a homer to Michael Morse – the second was just a 380′ job right next to the RF bullpen – but hey, got the run in. Wesley Wright came in to mopup in the 9th, gave up 2 singles, then couldn’t field a bunt single, so left without retiring a batter, and Chuckie Fick came in and gave up a sac fly and got a GIDP.

Which reminds me – Brett Wallace went 3 fer 4, and I am DAMM tired of him getting benched in games in which a lefty is pitching. This stuff is total horsestuff. And Julio Daniel GIDP twice.

This weekend, we welcome Milwaukee – Tomorrow, Bud Norris faces Mark Rogers, RHP, Milwaukee’s first round pick in the 04 draft who threw 2 games in 2010 and 2 games this year – 7 ER/10.1 IP. Looks as if he was hurt most of 2011 – only threw 60 something innings, and this year, has spent most of the year at AAA: 18 games over 95 IP with a 1.49 WHIP and a 4.73 ERA, and I’m sure he’s licking his lips, looking forward to facing the worst team in the NL.

Meanwhile, those dratted Rockies are clinging to their 4 games behind us – why can’t they just WIN???!!!

I see that OKC has lost the past 6 straight games – having all your SP (including pimpees Oberholzer and Clemens – Cosart is on the DL) with ERAs over 6 might could have something to do with it. The new guy, Rudy Owens is just as bad. And yeah, I know – all the “good” pitchers are in rookie ball and A ball and will be coming along in a few years when everything will be coming together. And I will be gone.

In Ex-Stros news, Chris Johnson went 2 fer 4 with a run scored tonight – he seems to be liking playing for a decent team and a manager whose head is not stuck firmly up his ass. He’s hitting .324/.362/.704/1.155. Yes, I know, small sample size. Meanwhile, Wandy lost his second game for the Pirates – 4 ER/6 IP – even though he got run support. Hunter Pence went ofer.

And HOW could I forget – we just bought Tyler Greene from the Cards (one of Luhnow’s little petsie-poos, no doubt) who was their 1st round pick in 05. You notice that this Organization is very fond of collecting other teams failed first rounders? He’s an IF, has hit .218, has a .629 OPS in 179 ABs, and last game, made an error to allow the winning runs to score. He’ll fit RIGHT in here. Hopefully, he’ll bat third. Brian Bixler got DFA – he hasn’t hit a lick since returning to AAA and if he gets picked up by some other club, he’ll prolly hit .500.

Which reminds me – I might be a little sporadic over the next couple weeks with posting what with moving and the kidz starting back to school again.

Not that I’m missing any real, you know, like, actual BASEBALL….