HOUSTON - AUGUST 21: Aaron Rowand #33 of the San Frnacisco Giants is tagged out by shortstop Clint Barmes #12 as second base umpire Cory Blaser looks in at Minute Maid Park on August 21, 2011 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Let's hit the good points and bad points of this series finale in bullet points:
- J.D. Martinez - He only went 3 for 5 with the Astros only extra-base hit, a double in the bottom of the first. He also drove in two runs and struck out once. This was a nice bounce-back game for J.D., who's stats are starting to perk up again. If he finishes the season with 10 homers and 14 doubles, I think we'll be pretty happy with his season,
- Jimmy Paredes - I keep saying this, I know, but Paredes continues to surprise me with his performance. A steal in this one along with a 2 for 5 day with a strikeout and a run scored. If I had to pick at nits, I'd wish Paredes showed a little more power, but with his defense and a better-than-expected walk rate, he's a boon at third base.
- Jordan Lyles - Though he didn't play in this one, I was pleasantly surprised that Houston took the proactive step of sending Lyles down. I know it was partly because of Jordan Schafer's situation, but it still shows Houston is more serious about limiting his innings than I thought they might be. I will be more skeptical once he gets called up for the bullpen, but for now, it's a good thing.
- Mark Melancon - Not a good night for the rookie closer. But, that's what rookie closers do. Sometimes, they combust. Of course, I could also complain that Mills has shown an annoying tendency to pitch Melancon in multiple inning stints. Plus, he doesn't get consistent work in, you know, save situations. But, Melancon is still putting together a solid rookie season. Let's focus on that instead.
- Henry Sosa - I say bad because this was maybe Sosa's worst start of his brief, brief big league career. His strikeouts were down, but his control was pretty good. I would have liked Sosa to do better against his former team, especially with Kepp in the lineup, but we can't always get what you want.
- Jason Michaels - Why, WHY must he play? Did Mills miss those laser beams Bogey sent to home plate? Or his isolated power average? Or his walk rate? Oh, by all means, let's stick Michaels in instead.
- Carlos Lee - Don't forget how bad he's been this month. Don't ever forget. .170/.323/.245. Don't forget.