Thank you Brian. Apparently you didn’t get the message that the Astros are supposed to be beat to death by Ricky Nolasco – it’s his second CG agains us.
Starting pitching was teh suck tonight, just as it was last night – at least I can give Lyles a lil rope because he’s a 20 year old kid who was brought up because, well, uh, this year the team is so bad he won’t get noticed?
Anyway, it’s a leadoff walk, followed by a SB, a groundout, a HBP, a groundout RBI and a flyout – 20 pitches. Astros bring bats with large holes in em and it’s Johnson-ie who gets the first hit of the night in the second.
John Buck, ex-Stro, hits his 100th career homer in the second. Which was the game winner – yeah, that early. It’s a 1,2,3 3rd, but a 25 pitch 4th. Logan Morrison (he’s a pretty good ballplayer – and a standup guy who is not afraid to speak his mind to the media on the record without going all Bull Durham – but the media doesn’t want anything to do with him because he’s not from NY/Boston) doubles with 1 out, but Stanton Ks, Mike Cameron walks on 4 pitches and Buck grounds out.
5th inning, the ol WB runs into a brick wall – tougher to punch out. So to speak. He does get the pitcher to strike out again, but then Bonifacio singles. Infante hits a tailor made 6-3 GIDP ball right to Barmes, who bobbles it – he hurried his positioning because Bonifacio was already heading into second – and both runners are safe. Then Gaby Sanchez goes to 3-2 and takes the next pitch for a ball. The ump was right and it WAS, in fact, inside. But the ol WB freaks out (he’s had a tough time finding the zone all night and the ump was good – he didn’t miss a pitch for either guy. It was the Astros who missed pitches, throwin em and hittin em.
But I digress…
Where was I? Oh yeah. So there we are – bases loaded, pitcher havin a lil trouble with his concentration – along with his pitching. Hanley Ramirez, who KILLS Astros pitching (lifetime BA is .395 vs Houston) is up and he walks on 7 pitches. Looks to me as if it is time to pull the starter, seeing as how Logan Morrison is up and isn’t having any trouble seeing/timing the pitches. Well, nobody except Nolasco is, but again I digress.
Where is Millsie-poo? Is he gonna leave his pitcher in – who is discombobulated (isn’t that a great word) and has walked 2 guys in a row and had a fit about Ball 4 each time. Is it really necessary to leave Mr. Tough Guy in when he can’t find the strike zone just because he likey his rep as The Guy Who Pitches 6 Innings Every Start? It’s not as if the Astros hitters are hitting the ball well against Nolasco.
So in he stays. And Logan Morrison is cool and collected. Takes 2 pitches off the outside, then a high strike. He fouls off a borderline pitch, then hits a FB right down the middle to the CF gap and all 3 guys score easily.
NOW Millsie-poo comes in to pull Brettsie-poo. But it’s a little too late to do the right thing now.
In comes Wiltonie (or is it Lopezzie) - and I shut my eyes tight because he’s done a terrible job with allowing inherited runners to score, but he gets the first out – a GB right to Johnsonn-ie, so Morrison can’t score, then a 1 pitch out. He comes in for the 6th, gives up a single to Buck, then Nolasco tries to sac-bunt, but dribbles it in front of Q so it’s a 2-6-3 GIDP. Bonifacio flies out.
In the 7th, with 2 out, Carlossie Ks, Wallie grounds out, then Johnsonnie hits a single to left (dude, WHERE has your power gone to?????) and Bogusevic, pinch hitting for Lopezzie, smashes a double to left center and the run scores!!! No shutout for Nolasco.
Enerio Del Rosario (hows about we call him Rosie – yeah, that sounds nice and cute) pitches the 7th – 2 singles, but no runs and Aneury (oh dear, whatEVAH shall we do? He’s already got an ie sounding first name – maybe we should switch to Roddie) pitches a nice 1,2,3 8th.
Nolasco just keeps mowin em down. Astros get 7 hits, 1 walk, 1 run. Pence and Kepp didn’t hit and Clank didn’t hit when there were MOB – just a double in the 8th when it didn’t matter no mo.
Watching this team is painful, the wins sudden glad surprises in a season of horror. Reminds me of that old joke (not a good one exactly) about someone who asks a woman why she stays with a guy who beats her and she says – because it feels so good when it stops (very appropriate, given today’s pitcher, dontcha think?)
Tomorrow afternoon, it’s Wandy vs Chris Volstad, RHP. Chris this year has a 5.46 ERA/1.47 WHIP. Same as Javy Vazquez, for what it’s worth. He threw 2 games against us last year, both times giving up 3 runs over 6 IP. He’s pitched 5 of 7 QS over his last 7 games – getting his head handed to him by Philly in both the games he lost. Otherwise, he was solid. He didn’t get wins because he didn’t get run support. Wandy understands – he faced the Marlins in April, went 7 innings, gave up 1 run and got a ND – he left with the lead and Lopezzie blew his win.
It would be nice if Wandy could get this one and we could go out on a more positive note to end the first half.
p.s. – am I wrong about this or did Saint Jeter get about 100 times the amount of coverage of his 3000th hit than Biggio did? I remember Biggio getting like 45 seconds on BBTN unlike Jeter’s 45 minutes…