Archive for August, 2011

8/31/11: Pirates Ask – What HAPPened As Astros Have First Home Series Sweep Of 2011

Wednesday, August 31st, 2011

J looked like a different guy up there. He didn’t have that look like – oh no, I have to throw the ball, God help me. He worked quickly – unusual for him, and threw strikes. He faced 24 batters and went to 3 ball counts on only 4 of em. Really. He had only 2 hitters who required more than 6 pitches and got 2 GIDPs. No homers, no well hit balls at all. 3 singles, 1 walk.

I don’t know whether or not it’s just that the Pirates are a shell of the team that kicked us into mush earlier this year, or whether Burt Hooton fixed whatever was wrong with him, but all I can say is that this was the ONLY really excellent outing I’ve seen him have all year.

The Astros hit decently – left bases loaded no out in the second, 1 on in the first and third, 2 on in the 8th. They scored the only runs off McDonald, who was VERY good, in the 4th. Paredes walked, Sanchez singled him to 3rd, then Quintero hit this dribbler back toward the pitchers mound, Doumit went out to get it and as no one was at home, Paredes scored. Doumit threw to first for the out, and Sanchez went to third as Jones at first made a crappy throw home. Then McDonald walked the pitcher – always a bad omen.  I would say that Jordan Schafer executed the squeeze except that Sanchez didn’t take off at the pitch and Schafer was bunting for a hit – but it looked sort of like a safety squeeze and I most certainly DO like the squeeze. Altuve GIDP.

And that was all she wrote, but that was enough as Froddy got 1,2,3 in the 8th and Maalox came in for the save – got 2 grounders to second, then hit McCutchen – he just can NOT ever seem to get 1,2,3 – then got Doumit swinging – and he owes the umpire for a mega gift Strike 2 which was very high and outside.

Off day tomorrow, then the Brew Crew – now leading the NL Central by like 10 games, comes in to town thinking of yet another sweep. But this ain’t Miller Park where they are 50-17; they’re 9 games under .500 on the road.

Friday, we’re calling up Lucas Harrell, RHP, who Fast Eddie picked up off waivers from the White Sox earlier this year. You wanna guess how many guys on the AAA roster are guys who were originally drafted by the Astros? You wanna guess how many guys at AA on the roster were originally drafted by the Astros, let alone Fast Eddie?

Anyway, Lucas was a 4th rounder in 04. To make a long story short, he pitched 29 mega-suck innings for the White Sox last year over 3 GS and 8 in relief – you don’t want to hear the numbers, but he walked everyone in sight and threw BP. He pitched decently at AAA for the White Sox and for Houston this year: about 3.5 BB/9, 6.4 K/9 and 8 H/9 with a 1.25 WHIP.

We’re facing RHP Zack Greinke (which means no JMike starting in RF) and his 4.05 ERA and 13-5 record. Remember the year he won the CY in the AL and all those media guys groused about how bad his W/L was – bet they think he’s better this year and Has Learned How To Win (having Da Prince and Ryan Braun hitting like crazy got nothing to do with it). Anyway, he beat us last time out – 4 hits, 3 walks, 1 ER/7 IP.

Last series, there were some real actual Brewers fans in the stands. They sell out their home games. Amazing what putting a winning team on the field does – the Brewers went from a dreadful owner in Bud Cheapo Selig, I mean, his Proxy/daughter Wendy Selig, to Mark Attanasio, a guy who was willing to spend some $$$ because he wanted to win.

And speaking of owners – check out Maury Brown’s latest. Maury is the guy who wrote the expose on Jim Crane for Forbes – you know, the war profiteering, the Little Problems with his company policy of not liking to hire Spix, Niggaz and Bytchez and Other Undesireables and his destroying files so the EEOC couldn’t see them – oh yeah – and pointed out how the leveraging was like over the MLB debt limit. If we get shut of Crane and actually get a group with money in here, we ALL owe Maury BIG time seeing as how no other national baseball writer could be bothered to do any checking – let alone the local columnists/reporters.

8/30/11: Henry Sosa Pitches 6 EXCELLENT Innings And Beats Pirates

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011

Henry Sosa did an OUTSTANDING job tonight – 2 hits, 1 walk, 7 K – 1 ER on a walk, sac-bunt, then a single.  He only threw 89 pitches, looked great in the 6th and was only pulled for a pinch hitter, as the Astros had quite a rally going.

The Stros had at least 1 man on base in every inning, but no one scored until Jose Altuve hit a solo homer into the Crawford Boxes in the 5th. Guess he had to think inside the Box – hahahaha.

The 6th was just insane – Paredes singled, went to second on a balk – Charlie Morton was a little crazy tonight – 6 hits, 4 walks (2 IBB to Corporan – snicker) 2 WP and a balk. Paredes stole 3rd base and Barmes GO. Then, don’t ask me why, Corporan was IBB AGAIN. I mean, the guy can barely hit a FB down the middle. It’s one thing in the 4th inning – there won’t be a PH if the pitcher is the last out, but in the 6th? Downs came in to PH (Millsie-poo must have been serious – it wasn’t Michaels) and singled home Paredes to give the Astros the lead.

Morton out, Chris Leroux (who had shut the Astros DOWN earlier this year) in and he gives up a single UTM – juuuust out of reach of Cedeno to Schafer. Bases loaded. Altuve swings at the first pitch, another single UTM, 1 run in, bases still loaded. JD singles, 2 runs in. Clank goes to 3-2, hits an opposite field single, Altuve scores.

Leroux hasn’t gotten a single out and has let both of Morton’s runs score.

Daniel McCutchen in – gets Bogu to 3-2, then he lines out to third. Paredes hits an 0-2 to the LF corner, JD scores. Barmes flies out. SIX runs have scored and Astros lead 7-1.

7th inning – Wesley Wright comes in, gets 1,2,3 out. Mc Cutchen pitches the 8th, gives up a single to Corporan, who scores on a JD Maartinez single – Brownie and Deshaeis say that he is 1 RBI away from tying the ML August record RBIs.

8th inning – who should appear to relieve but the ol WB – no, I really AM serious – I mean, starters don’t usually come in for an inning of work in middle relief when they had a normal length start 2 days before. Gave up a single, a swinging K, a popup then another swinging K. Guess he had something he wanted to work on and it was his day for a bullpen anyway.

Resop in, gets 2 swinging Ks and a grounder.

9th – my GAWD, the ol WB is STILL pitching. What on earth? I can’t remember seeing a starter throw more than 1 relief inning unless it is extra innings. He gives up a line drive homer to RF to McCutchen (Andrew, that is) but gets the other 3 outs, the last one on a great running catch by JD Martinez. He’s gotten a LOT better out there in left since he’s been learning that tricky LF.

Tomorrow, it’s righty James McDonald vs J Happ. McDonald beat the Astros earlier this year, 3 ER/5.2 IP. But he’s not been overwhelming, 4.22 ERA/1.47 WHIP, .267 BAA over 145 IP.

8/29/11: Wandy Strikes Out 13 Hitters, ALL Swinging And Beats Pirates

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011

Wandy was a strike throwing machine through 3 innings – struck out the side in the second, swinging. He struck out the side in the 4th, too, after FIRST giving up a double to the LF bullpen, a opposite field line drive homer that just cleared the fence near the RF flagpole, then a double off the RF bullpen, then a double off the scoreboard - 3 runs. 4 pitches, all mid plate, flat FB. Don’t know what happened there…

He started off with an 8 pitch walk in the 5th, but then got 3 outs – even with a WP. Another walk in the 6th, but 3 outs, the last 2 swinging. 1,2,3 in the 7th. 7 IP – 4 H, 4 W, 3 R, 13 K – his personal K record.

You know, fangraphs says he has the best curveball in the ML – gets the most outs with it. All Yew Peeple who think that he’s replacement level at best.

And Ross Ohlendorf pitched VERY well – for him, too. I think they had him on a pitch count because he was pulled after the 5th, leading 3-2, having thrown only 70 pitches. Got 1,2,3 out for the first 3 innings. Then JD Martinez hit a 2 out single and Clank walked – seemed to me that he’s taking more walks this year, and he’s got 47 in 129 games – he might could even reach his career high of 58 in 06. Then Bogusevic doubled to the LF corner to drive in JD – at least we won’t get shutout.

By the way, speaking of Bogu, Millsie-poo talked about him yesterday, on the record, about him maybe earning the RF job, and Millsie-poo made it VERY clear he was gonna continue the platoon with Bourgeois and Michales, especially as Michaels is hitting a robust .218 against leftys. Too bad he didn’t get asked if Schafer was always gonna be platooned vs leftys, too.

In the 5th, Barmes doubled, Corporan Kd, Wandy grounded out – no bunting?? then Altuve singled Barmes home, but JD grounded out to 3rd.

In the 6th, righty middle reliever Jason Grilli comes in – one of those guys nearing the end who changes teams every year now – and walks Clank on 4 straight pitches, but Bogu GIDP. He then walks Paredes, gives up a single on a hanging curve, then Corporan GO after 2 balls. Sigh – the guy can hardly throw a strike – should have made him work a little more.

In the 7th, Bourgeois pinch hits – he’s hitting a rough patch lately, has had only 3 singles and 5 walks over the past 2 weeks - and grounds out. Schafer is HBP, Altuve doubles him to 3rd.

Grilli out, Jose Veras, who shut the Astros DOWN earlier this year, is out. He give up a chopper to third to JD (who isn’t hitting those serious line drives lately – he’d better get adjusting) but Brandon Wood, the third baseman can’t get a clear shot to the catcher to get Schafer at home, so the game is tied. Then Carlos hits a low fastball juuuuuust over the line in the Crawford Boxes for a 3 run homer.

First time this year Wandy has left while losing and the team has come back for him. Bogu doubles, but Paredes and Barmes strand him.

Top of the 8th, David Carpenter comes in and gets 1,2,3 out. Maalox is warming up in the pen for the 9th and I’m feeling VERY nervous – hoping we get like 6 more runs.

In comes lefty Tony Watson. Corporan strikes out again. Bourgeois singles and steals second. Schafer singles, but the ball is barely over the head of the second baseman and Boogy had to wait to start for 3rd to make sure the ball wasn’t caught. Then Altuve has a perfect push bunt down the first base line and Bourgeois scores – NOT a squeeze because he didn’t start home the second the ball was pitched. Then there is a double steal, only it’s called DI because Doumit didn’t bother to notice/throw. Downs comes in to pinch hit and bad baserunning happens. He hits the ball to the SS, who throws to first, who throws back to the SS to tag Altuve off second – he didn’t look to make sure Schafer was running, which he wasn’t.  Then they forget that’s 3 outs, so they throw to home to try to get Schafer, who broke late, guess he figured he’d try to score if Altuve could get himself in a rundown. They looked ridiculous.

Top of the 9th – it’s Juan Abreu (the reliever who Fast Eddie drooled over from the Bourn trade because he throws hard) who gets 2 Ks, then gives up a walk. Next pitch is way up and out. Out trots Clank, then Corporan, then Broakie. Then it’s strike 1, fouls 1-3, 2 balls way out of the zone, then a FB straight down the middle, which is hit to the Warning track in front of The Hill – Schafer needs to learn to play that Hill…

So Abreu, who looked nervous as heck, was pulled and Maalox comes in, throws strike 1 right down the middle, which fortunately Tabata takes – he finally gets him to K on a borderline FB and my blood pressure comes back down and Wandy gets his W.

UPDATE: sorry for late posting – I screwed up and this didn’t post last night when I thought I did…

8/28/11: In Which Maalox Melancon Blows Yet ANOTHER Save But Altuve And Downs Bail Him Out

Sunday, August 28th, 2011

Bud Norris wanted SOOOOO badly to win his first game at his home town stadium and the boy did an outstanding pitching job – 10 K, 7 IP, 3 H, 1 BB, 2 runs – unfortunately, the hits/walks came in the same inning along with a sac-fly. Problem was that Matt Cain was just as good and at the end of 8, the score was tied 2-2.

I noticed that today, Bud had the FB back up to 94 – 95, which I hadn’t seen in a while. He had the slider working well, and in spite of being squoze by the HP ump (but the ump gave him one back, calling out Huff on a 3rd “strike” that was 4″ outside), he didn’t throw way too many pitches to too many hitters. He got em swinging away at high FB. I think he also threw fewer changeups today, too – he didn’t have that one working well.

Matt Cain is one of those pitchers Who Doesn’t Know How To Win – meaning that the media don’t have no respect for him because his team doesn’t score much when he pitches and he has a lot of 1 or 2 run losses/no decisions. When you are a good pitcher, your team always scores lots of runs for you like CC Sabathia. Somehow, Cain has a losing record in spite of a career ERA of 3.30/1.20 WHIP and a .228 BAA – that’s a career 125 ERA+ over 197 GS. Like I said, he’s a VERY good pitcher and he held the Astros to 5 hits, 1 walk and 2 runs over 8 IP.

So it became a battle of the bullpens – and I know that the Giants have a better one.

So in the 8th, it was Wilton Lopez, who got 2 outs, gave up 2 singles, then Wesley Wright came in to get the lefty out. He started the 9th, seeing as how it was leftys – got the first one out, gave up a single and was pulled. I was disappointed – was hoping to see how he would do at second or 3rd or something. Froddy came in and got the next 2 outs.

Meanwhile, the Astros had to face Sergio Romo, fresh off the DL at the top of the 9th. JD struck out, Clank doubled – he’s had 6 hits over the last 7 AB – but caught his ankle on the bag sliding into second and had to come out and Downs had to play first in the next inning. Pinch runner Altuve got stranded by Downs and Bogu.

In the top of the 10th, it’s lefty Jeremy Affeldt – Paredes singles, Corporan sac-bunts him over. For some reason, Bochy leaves in the lefty (what little bit of hitting JMike can do, it’s vs leftys) and he actually manages to hit a baseball for a double and Paredes scores the go ahead run. I’m in shock. Jordan Schafer Ks, a righty is brought in and gets Angel Sanchez out.

Maalox comes in to shut the door. He gets an out, then gives up a single and a stolen base. I swear, Astros pitchers either can’t step it up or catchers can’t throw em out. And sure enough, very next hitter singles him in – Bogu throws him out at second. Bochy gets hisself a case of apoplexy, seeing as how the ump got it wrong, but it’s too bad for them because Beltran, the very next hitter, singles and promptly steals second. So they IBB Pedro Sandoval and strike out Belt.

Yet another Blown Save – #5 out of 21 save opportunities (with another 3 losses) vs 13 saves – if I counted right, and I think I did.

Since becoming closer on May 6, Maalox has had 42 appearances. Of those, he has had 10 in which he got 3 outs, no baserunners. 18 he had baserunners but gave up no runs (of his own) and 14 in which he gave up his own runs. In August, he hasn’t had ONE appearance in which he’s put no men on base.

So it’s the 11th, and it’s righty Ramon Ramirez, who has shut down the Stros over the past few nights. He gets JD (who went ofer) then gives up a double to Altuve, who gets the BA back up to .300 and Downs singles him home before getting caught in a rundown. Bogu, who has had a tough 2 games, grounds out.

So it’s David Carpenter in to slam the door shut – and he hasn’t had it quiiiite as easy here in the majors as he’s had in the minors. He hits the first hitter with his first pitch. Then Miggy Tejada sac-bunts him over. You ever think you’d see Miggy Tejada sac-bunting? But Rowand Ks and Fontenot grounds out and David Carpenter has himself his very first ML save.

And the Astros split the series – which is great, seeing as how this team doesn’t do real too well at Pac Bell.

Tomorrow, we’re back home to face the Pirates, who aren’t quiiiite as successful as they were the last time we faced them. It’s the Wand Man vs Ross Ohlendorf, who hasn’t done real too good against the Astros in his career – 6.17 ERA. Looks as if he’s been hurt most of the year – started 4 games at AAA, 3 in the majors, only 1 since May, and his ERA is 7.24.

It WOULD be nice to win one for the Wand Man. And by the way, I heard tell that the Rox were not exactly the only team who wanted him and was more than happy to pick up his ENTIRE contract. Justice and fans who think that other teams think it is a bad contract are just wrong…

8/27/11: When You’re Hot, You’re Hot – Keppinger Beats Astros Again

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

And trust me, hot is not a strong enough word to describe me today – the thermometer in my back yard said 108 – and that was in the shade. I look at the already drenched east coast getting all that lovely rain and I feel serious envy – we sure could use some of it. None of use had much of any energy to do much of anything today – we kept the temp inside the house 85-87, had ceiling fans going, floor fans going and we were still miserable – and it’s gonna be the same tomorrow. It’s now down to a nice cool 93 and all I can say is thank God for the fans.

Speaking of fans, only lousy player i can think of whose manager is a bigger fan than Fast Eddie/Millsie-poo is with JMike, who is starting tonight (lefty pitcher) has got to be Mike Scoscia with Jeff Mathis. I’m almost too hot/tired to care.

Did you know that TVs give off heat?

Giants scored one in the first – Fontenot led off with a double, then  straight groundouts. Astros keep putting on runners and they keep getting stranded: 2 on in the 1st, 1 on second in the 2nd, bases loaded 1 out in the 3rd – JMike, then Paredes strand em; 4th, left a man on second; 5th, Clank on second, JMike, then Paredes strands him; 6th, man on second stranded.

Note – Jose Altuve is starting to run into a little trouble keeping up with keeping up. Too many groundouts.

In the 7th, the Giants pull Surkamp, not sure why, he’d thrown only 87 pitches and the Astros weren’t getting anywheres. Now to that lethal bullpen, starting with righty Guillermo Mota. Didn’t matter – 2 GO, then Clank singled (he’s 3 fer 3 tonight) and pinch hitter Bogu struck out on a 3-2 high FB.

Kids are dead tired from the heat and have fallen asleep – Dogss are miserable and are lying outside the kitchen on the stone patio (well, it’s not a real patio, but I like to pretend) because the stones are coldern the floor. I’ts supposed to get down to a nice chilly 75 tonight – probably at 5 AM.

And I’m hoping the Astros can manage to score a run and keep the lead – Mota is back out for the 8th and it’s 1,2,3 out again.

Score still tied 1-1.

Wilton Lopez comes out to start the 8th – at least he won’t be letting someone else’s runs score. So he gets 2 out, he walks Keppinger, Carlos Beltran singles to short. So Wilton is out, Wesley Wright is in to pitch to Sandoval. So Panda is out, Orlando Cabrera (a righty) is in.

HORRORS!!! WHATEVAH WILL MILLSIE-POO DO????

We have a lefty pitching to a righty!!! The sky will fall in !!! Meanwhile Bochy is out grousing to the umps about too many Astros visits or something, but no luck, no change.

Wesley don’t care, he just gets O-Cab to ground out to Altuve. It’s only Millsie-poo who is all obsessed with that stuff.

9th – Righty Santiago Casilla, interim closer, in to pitch. Lefty Jordan Schafer in to PH. No cigar – it’s 1,2,3 out.

And me, I’m too tired to keep my eyes open. I’ll find out who won at 5 AM – I have this feeling that their bullpen is better than our hitters…

UPDATE: 3 AM: Jeff Keppinger beats Astros again with a walk off single off Fernando Rodriguez. You remember Kepp, the guy Fast Eddie wanted so badly to get rid of at the end of last year, to install Bill Hall instead.

8/27/11: Henry Sosa Wins His 1st ML Game: J Happ Pitches Decently And Loses

Friday, August 26th, 2011

Man I HATE these West Coast games – they start just about the time I’m finally getting the kidz in bed, and I’m TIRED. For those of you don’t got no kidz, let me tell you something – taking care of babies/toddlers is no big deal at ALL compared to school age kids. You think that once they get potty trained and can dress themselves you’re home free. Um, no.

So anyhow, I managed to catch some of last night’s game – innings 2-6 of henry Sosa’s first win – the guy looked pretty good. And the Astros tie the 03 Tigers!!! How exciting!!! Maalox saves the game, but no 1,2,3 inning again.

Stadium is absolutely packed, both games – and to see the worst team in the ML, too. How About That?

I figured that tonight, I’d catch at least the first few innings of J Happ’s start, see if he’s managed to get some movement or velocity on that FB – he threw it at least 93 when he was with Philly and now he’s down to 88. First inning, he got a single, GIDP, out!!! On less than 30 pitches!!!

Second inning, single, GO, FO, then with a man on 3rd, he’s pitching to the #8 guy hitting .202. Goes to Ball 3, then IBB. Good grief. Then it’s the pitcher – throws only FB, goes to 3-2 then walks him. Same ol Happ. Fortunately, Orlando Cabrera GO on the next pitch. Only 37 pitches now – but I guess it’s an improvement. Like WOW!!!

I guess I should mention that I am shocked to see that Millsie-poo played Jordan Schafer against a lefty pitcher. I mean, what is going on here? And he’s playing Bourgeois in right instead of Jason Eff Michaels. I mean, I had to look twice, I mean, no Jason Michaels? The sky is falling!!!

3rd inning – FO, single, GIDP.

Downsie is having a lousy game (he’s playing 3rd tonight – you know, Paredes hits mostly from the left) – a GIDP and then he screws up a hitnrun and Clank is dead meat at second.

4th inning – 2 Ks and a flyout. 62 pitches. Do I dare think that Burt Hooton might could have straightened him out? (Real pitching coaches are good?)

5th inning – nope. First, a ROE on an easy GB that Barmes let clank of his glove, a sac bunt, a 4 pitch walk, then Keppinger has a 9 pitch AB and Happ throws a FB down the middle and Kepp drives it into the LF gap and 2 runs are in. Then a FO, then another 4 pitch walk (the second one this inning) and finally a GO. 28 pitch innng – up to 90 pitches.

Same Happ, different game.

Astros still haven’t scored, by the way.

6th inning – GO, GO, FO – 6 pitches. Go figure.

Stros break up the shutout – Downs is hit on the foot, then Altuve singles, then Stewart, the Giants catcher, tries to pick Downs off second, but the catcher throws the ball into CF, so both runners move up. Barmes hits an RBI grounder, Q singles, Altuve to third. Of course, we need a pinch hitter, and NATURALLY, it’s Jason Michaels – hey, the game is on the line. Why not the worst? But it’s Bogu to the plate and he Ks on a 3-2 pitch. Might as well have been JMike. Schafer GO stranding runners at first and third.

So all in all, not a bad job by J – lasted 6 innings, 96 pitches, 4 hits, 4 walks, 2 K, 1 ER, 2 R. Better than he had done in like weeks.

Aneury pitches the 7th – popup, FO, FO.  Then the Astros go 1,2,3 in the top of the 8th.

Aneury comes out to start the bottom of the 8th, gives up a walk, gets a K. Then of course Millsie-poo didn’t trust Aneury to get a lefty out, so it’s in with Wesley, who gets the lefty, then David Carpenter, who gets the last out.

9th – Brian Wilson is on the DL, so Santiago Casilla in to close – Giants bullpen is KILLAH – one of the reasons they have a winning record in spite of having the lousiest hitting in the NL. And he gets 1,2,3 out.

Series tied up. Poor Happ – one of the few times he didn’t suck and he gets the L anyway.

Tomorrow, we face lefty Eric Surkamp, just up from AA. He was the Giants’ 6th round pick in 08. He has a 2.02 ERA/1.08 WHIP over 142 IP: 10.4 K/9, 7 H/0 and 2.8 BB/9. You notice how well the Giants develop pitchers year after year after year?

Bourgeois has been slumping lately – hope this doesn’t mean we’re gonna be stuck with JMike.

8/25/11: Wandy Is Still An Astro

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

Apparently, Fast Eddie demanded that the Rockies give their 2 best pitching prospects and top catching prospect.

Now why he wouldn’t do that with the Braves I don’t know (and we’ll see one of the AAA guys they didn’t think much of – Juan Abreu. But Fast Eddie gots to make sure we all see how wonderful his trading Skillz are after he had 3 lousy drafts in a row – it don’t matter if they all sign if they weren’t much to begin with…)

The Rox WOULD have taken Wandy and his entire contract, but noooooooo. So now Wandy can be blamed for 4 years for being the reason the Astros don’t have “payroll flexibility”.

However, another team COULD claim him – and youneverknow…

The game is at Pac Bell tonight – one of those late starts, not sure if I’ll get around to watching Henry Sosa – Vogelsong isn’t likely to be lousy 2 games ion a row, but youneverknow.

Are people REALLY surprised that JB Shuck got sent down instead of releasing JMike? The guy who HAS to play in the OF if a lefty is pitching because Bogusevic will turn into a pumpkin if he learns how to face ML leftys.

We’ve been tied with the 62 Mets for so long now – next in view is the 03 Tigers, 43 Wins. I’m so excited…

8/24/11: Rockies Sweep Astros

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011

Bud Norris absolutely needs to work on his fielding and he needs to be a LOT faster to the plate – and he had thrown 74 pitches by the end of the 3rd inning – 3 walks, 3 SB and FOUR throwing/fielding effups.

Oh yeah – and 94 pitches by the end of the 4th – just TOO many effing pitches out of the strike zone – he’s lookin like he did a year ago – with a lot fewer strikeouts.

And Wandy has caught WB disease giving up 4 in the first – single, triple (Shuck, playing LF, dived and missed), single, homer that woulda been off the scoreboard at home, 2 groundouts, a single, then a single that was a effup by Paredes – throwing to the wrong base again, just as he did last night – needs to learn to get the out at first, and a blessed final GO. 34 freaking pitches. He gave up a 2 run homer in the 4th that didn’t count because the runner reached on error – Downs is not a good fielder.

So I guess we’ll find out tomorrow whether or not Wandy will stay with us or go to the Rox.

sigh

The boys did a whole lot of hitting but left too many guys on and made too many fielding screwups.

Things I’ve noticed – Jimmy Paredes is getting a total pass about all the errors/mental effups he makes and CJ never did. Clint Barmes doesn’t hit better than Adam Everett did and isn’t near the fielder but yet I never hear a word about that.

JA Happ has been called back up to take Lyles spot in the rotation – he pitched better at AAA, but he still gave up 3 walks each start. He had a start of 5,6 and 7 innings. I can’t wait to see the new and improved J.

Escalona is hurting and has been put on the DL and so Juan Abreu, one of the prizes (ahem) in the Michael Bourn trade is being called up. Fast Eddie gots to show off his mad skillz. Abreu, by the way, is a righty, which means we just might could be seeing Wesley Wright playing RF a lot more often.

8/22/11: Bogusevic Homers Again As Astros Resume Losing Ways

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

This entry is gonna be short tonight (kidz!!!!!) and I got home late and the score was already 6-0 because the ol WB had thrown 32 pitches allowing SIX freaking runs including a 2 run double to the pitcher.

I’m more than disgusted because the Astros just waived byby to any chance of getting rid of him and now it’s gonna be Wandy, unfortunately.

It’s too bad that Bogu didn’t hit that homer with 2 on 2 out in the bottom of the second. And that Clank didn’t swing at a slider in the dirt with 2 on 2 out in the 4th. Another year of watching Clank waste space on a team which should be only playing young guys.

But I digress – Bogu went 3 fer 4 with a 10 pitch walk and he should not be benched for the likes of Jason Worthless Michaels – actually, today, he managed to get on base by being HBP which was pretty good for him – and he scored a run on Downs pinch 3 run homer.

Let’s say that Schafer was less than impressive with bat or glove. Yes, I know, small sample size and he’s gonna get the rest of the year to sink or swim.

Aneury pitched 2 great innings – got an out, gave up 2 walks in the 8th, so in comes David Carpenter who Francoes poor Aneury’s runners, then manages to load up the bases before getting a swinging K for the final out.

This team is BAD at stranding runners. Both relievers letting other pitchers runners score and hitters at leaving too many MOB. Tonight, we had fifteen hits – FIFTEEN – and scored only 5 runs.

sigh

Tomorrow night, Bud Norris faces righty Alex White, age 23, who has been on the DL since the middle of May with a sore middle finger. He was Cleveland’s 1st round pick in 09 – they traded him for Ubaldo jiminez a few weeks back. So we’ll have to see what we get. At least Jason Michaels won’t be playing RF.

8/21/11: Melancon Gives Up The Game Losing Homer And Jordan Lyles Gets Sent Down

Sunday, August 21st, 2011

Henry Sosa gave up 4 runs over 5 IP = your standard 5th starter. Only 4 hits and a walk, but unfortunately for him, one of the hits was a 3 run homer.

Wesley Wright, called up a few days ago when Fulchino was sent down, threw a 1,2,3 6th.  Then Wilton Lopez started the 7th, gave up a HBP, a single, a K – so it’s first and 3rd, 1 out (the usual Wilton story this year), then the next guy hits a ball to Paredes and the man on 3rd gets called out in a rundown. Next batter is lefty, so naturally it’s goo-bah Wilton, hello Escalona – who gets the lefty out.

So he starts the 8th, gets one out, makes an error, screwing up an easy comebacker, then a single. Then it’s a righty, Miggy Tejada, who can’t hit wet paper, so naturally you have to call in a righty.

Which is Froddy who gives up a single to load the bases. 1 out. The next guy flies out to JD, about 20′ in front of the scoreboard, about the middle of it. Nate Schierholz, a GOOD runner, is on third, and he tags up and sprints for home. Brownie says something about well, this is gonna break the tie, but JD Martinez rockets a perfect throw to Corporan, who blocks the plate and Schierholz is OUT. Clank woulda lobbed it in casually to third.

He pitches the 9th and isn’t exactly much better – starts off by giving up a single and gets lucky when the guy is thrown by Altuve after being caught off first. Which is lucky for Froddy because he gets a K, then gives up 2 straight singles and a walk before getting Schierholz to fly out leaving bases loaded. Poor guy – it wasn’t his night.

Melancon comes in to pitch the 10th – I figure he’s good for 2 innings, then it’s Aneury – I guess, to finish out however many more innings are left because there ain’t nobody else left seeing as how Millsie-poo runs thru relievers. So he gives up a single, Miggy Tejada GIDP (remember, he’s good at that) and gets a FO to Shuck.

Did I mention that Jason frigging Michaels started in right again – him and his .219 OBP – because Millsie-poo doesn’t trust Bogusevic or Shuck to face a lousy AAA lefty reliever trying to start. Either Ed Wade has ordered him to do this or he’s just an idiot.

So in the 11th, Maalox gives up a walk then throws a nice fat FB belt high outer third to Sandoval who sends it over the LF fence.

Stros go 1,2,3 against some AAA callup guy.

As for the Houston offense, it was all done against the lefty reliever, who was pulled with 2 outs in the second after 4 runs had scored.

Stros didn’t manage much more against a parade of relievers – Barmes K with 2 on 2 out in the 5th. They had a chance in the 9th – Corporan, who had earlier GIDP with bases loaded, was HBP, then Sanchez walked. Altuve, hitting .322, who has singled and driven in 2 runs already, is asked to sac bunt, giving up a precious out.

I’m not against sac-bunts. In fact, I’d like to see a few more squeezes, and I’d like to see Corporan sac-bunting or anyone else who can’t hit. But NOT a guy hitting over .300!!! And Bourgeois and JD don’t do the job and that was all she wrote as nobody did nothin in the 10th and 11th.

Should I mention that Clank left SEVEN men on base? He is sporting a 104 OPS+ which is better than last year’s 92, but he really shouldn’t be hitting cleanup. Yeah, I know – money.

So far, all the callups and Bogu are doing a bangup job. Really, it’s too bad we can’t bench Clank and call up Cody Hinze. Or let Bogu play first. Wallace is hitting at AAA, LOTS of singles. Chris Wallace, in case you’re curious, hasn’t played in 6 games because he got hit on the wrist with a pitch, but his OPS is 901.

Tomorrow, we’re off to Coors to face righty Jhoulys Chacin. Yes, righty, which means that we won’t hafta sudffer through Michaels clomping around in right and flailing, I mean failing at the plate. Jordan Schafer is getting called up and so naturally, he’s gonna play center because Ed Wade traded for him, never minid how well our own guys are going. The guy hasn’t hit well since “everyone” thought he was gonna be the next Mickey Mantle (or maybe jim Edmonds) or something because of his hitting at A ball. One of the many reasons I don’t really pay no never mind to A ball.

Anyway, he started on the ML team in 08, had a dismal 600 OPS over 167 AB, got sent down, then got hurt.

He was in the minors all of 09, posting a robust 500 OPS at AAA over 189 AB – he had a few others at A and AA – didn’t exactly stand out there neither.

This year at AAA Atlanta, he had a .633 OPS over 164 AB and at the ML level (they were desperate for SOME CF besides Nate McLouth before they got a REAL CF from us) he had a .623 OPS over 196 AB.

The guy hasn’t hit worth spit since he was at A ball, yet, he’s the centerpiece of a trade. Well, I could be wrong and he could re-create his A ball stats – youneverknow. But I think that he’s one of those guys who the scouts/baseball people LUUUUVVVV (kind of like Jeff Francoeur) because he looks like ballplayer or he has a swing like Mickey or he’s got a magic sort of personality like Francoeur – he’s the Justin Bieber to the screaming hordes of moaning sportswriters.

Youneverknow…

And Jordan Lyles has been kind of shut down – he’s been sent to AAA to pitch an inning every 3rd to 4th day so he doesn’t get overstressed even though he SEZ he feels fine. Which he might could but I know better than to believe ballplayers talking about how they feel fine… Guess Aneury will be starting – either that or one of Ed Wade’s new trade guys gonna start.