Astros get shut out for the 5th time this year – and the Pads don’t let the starter get his first career shutout, for some reason, don’t ask me why, because he was cruising.
Matt Latos, a rookie Padres pitcher, came into the game with an ERA of almost 5. The Astros are so bad, so dreadful – so DEAD, that it must really REALLY do a whole lot for the confidence of the opposing pitcher. And he mowed the Astros down with 9 pitches in the first. You know how it goes – if the Astros are gonna score even ONE run, we need Bourn to get to first, steal second, steal third, come home on a grounder. So I was a little more than disgruntled and it wasn’t ME pitching without having to worry about any future run support.
It had taken Bud Norris 21 pitches to get through the first, as he had gone to 3-2 on EVERY SINGLE hitter. That boy has just GOT to work on not throwing pitches out of the zone as he does – and it wasn’t the ump screwing him, neither. Take the second inning – he strikes out the first hitter, gives up a single to left to the next. Then he goes to 0-2 on Torrealba, throws a pitch waaay out of the zone, tries a pickoff, throws a wild pitch, and the hitter trots to second, then throws 2 more balls. What the heck????? Then during the next hitter’s at bat, there is a double steal – Torrealba – has 11 career steals over 10 years. Cash can’t come close to throwing either one out – so much for – everything is JR Towles’ fault. So the runner scores with a groundout. Manzella boots the ball, but the run would have scored anyway. Norris gets out of the inning striking out the next 2 guys.
That’s the thing about Norris – he has absolutely FILTHY stuff, but he just has such awful control problems – and neither Quintero the supposedly great nor Cash The Winnah has had the slightest effect on it.
Unfortunately, in the second, Feliz hit a bouncer over the head of the SS for a single – otherwise, I guess ESPN would have actually given the Astros some pub by showing how they were about to get no-hit. Latos needed 15 pitches to get through that inning. Then 10 pitches for a 1,2,3 3rd; 15 pitches for a 1,2,3 4th; 10 pitches for a 1,2,3 5th; 10 pitches for a 1,2,3 7th; 20 pitches for the 8th – Clank beats out an infield dribbler past the mound – HE HUSTLES!!!!! but Lance grounds into a FC and Michaels strikes out swinging at a pitch low and outside (don’t bother stopping me if you heard THAT one before. It ain’t just Pence no mo…) It does, however, take him 19 pitches to strike out the side 1,2,3 in the 8th – and Manzella put up a fight and didn’t swing at pitches outside the zone.
I don’t guess I need to talk about Bud serving up a FB down the middle on a 0-2 count to Scott Hairston, which he deposited in the Crawford Boxes. Or how he left a jiucy fat one over the plate and The Pest (yeah, him again) drove it to the LF bullpen for a double. Chase Headly actually hit a very good pitch up and in over the RF wall. And the Astros are down 4-0 and all yall KNOW we ain’t comin back from THAT. We have scored 20 runs over the last NINE games – and that includes the 4 run outburst in the only game we won.
Pathetic. We are by FAR the worst team in the major leagues – and that means worse than the Pirates and worse than the Royals and worse than the C*bs. We might could make a run at the 03 Tigers 43-119 record – or even the 42-120 record of the ’62 Mets, because I can’t believe that this dreadful team is gonna win any 5 games a month on average.
Where was I? Oh yeah – in Norris’ last inning, the 4th, Cash had a passed ball, which allowed the runner to get to second, and he trotted home on the PITCHER’S ground rule double. Yes, the freaking PITCHER outhit the entire Astros lineup - he had 2 doubles and an RBI. And Cash isn’t impressive in his ability to block balls in the dirt – I don’t care if he DID catch Wakefield – those pitches are only going 60 MPH, not 90+ something.
But it is clear that Cash’s glove and bat have REALLY turned things around.
Chacin pitched 2 scoreless – gave up a walk, an IF single (because there was a – uh, miscommunication between Kaz and Lance and Chacin didn’t get to first in time) and 2 solid singles, but no one scored.
Sampson pitched a 1,2,3 inning on 13 pitches. Not sure why he’s not allowed to pitch more than one inning – probably because someone might could get the idea that Sampson should be starting. Even Steve Sparks, filling in for JD, said that Sampson should be a very good ML starter for SOMEbody – hopefully the Astros. But they’d rather waste him in the pen so that they can be right about how he is a reliever and not a starter. Or something.
Wilton Lopez gave up a double to the PITCHER, then a homer high up off the left center wall to Scott Hairston – again.
Why is no pitcher allowed to pitch more than 1 inning – or, at most TWO innings of mopup? Wassup with that? Why tire everyone out?
I seem to remember we got rid of Russ Springer 3 or 4 years back because the Organization was UpSet that he could only go one inning – then they got Rick White – coughcough – who wasn’t exactly Mr. MoreThan One Inning Guy – and Springer pitched lights out for the Cards for 2 more years.
I don’t want Bud Norris/Paulino et al to get sent back down because it isn’t THEIR fault that the Astros can’t/won’t hit (you know that Wandy has THE lowest run support of any starting pitcher in the NL – an AVERAGE of 1.3 runs/game) and they have just GOT to work out their problems Up Here – there really isn’t anything they need to do at AAA and I don’t want to waste any more pitchers for some crappy veteran like Chacin.
Tomorrow, it’s Paulino vs Jon Garland.
I was surprised to see the stands about half full – must be the fireworks. This keeps up, and we’re gonna draw like the Marlins…