In a stretch of games that have become increasingly familiar with each strong start from a pitcher and each timely hit form the offense, the Astros managed to score just enough to beat the Reds 4-3 and take the series against the club leading the NL Central. Despite being outhit 11-6, Brett Myers and a host of relief pitchers pieced together a typical second half victory for Houston.
Brett Myers cannot be praised enough for his performance this season. 31 starts, 31 times he's pitched at least six innings. While he doesn't have Lincecum or King Felix' repertoire, he isn't merely a savvy veteran either. Per usual, Myers mixed his pitches well and escaped what trouble found him. With the bullpen going on the seventh inning, Myers bore down after allowing a leadoff bunt single to UT product Drew Stubbs.
Ed Wade may have lucked into the Myers signing, but regardless of the reason, Myers is here and is excelling. If healthy, we thought he could be a workhouse. Nobody thought he could be a 5 WAR pitcher. That's what he's become. This is especially impressive considering the Astros most likely would have had to throw in Josh Bankses and pitchers of his ilk to fill the spot in the rotation that Myers has ably stepped into.
Offensively, Chris Johnson tried his best to answer Stephen's article from yesterday, as CJ pumped up his power numbers with a double and a homer. As mentioned earlier, our boys didn't tear the cover off the ball, but their hits counted. Hunter Pence has fallen off in the past week, again going hitless. The youngsters Brett Wallace and Jason Castro sat this one out, but as it's been for much of the past 100 games, whoever was in there for the Astros did the job and helped the team earn a win.
Matt Lindstrom's Sunday was a rough one, allowing three runs in 2/3 of an inning. Mark Melancon was called on to replace the scuffling Lindstrom and did his job by striking out Drew Stubbs looking. The ninth inning was an adventure, with Brandon Phillips and Scott Rolen singling with two outs to bring up MVP favorite Joey Votto. Even with Votto at the dish, Astro fans shouldn't have been that nervous. After all, wasn't this as much of a deja vu game as any? Votto popped up meekly to Jeff Keppinger in shallow center, and that was that.