Apologizes for the lateness on the recap. I was working late trying to rebuild an anti-virus server and David was having internet issues while on vacation with the family.
Lucas Harrell started the game and struggled through the first three innings of the game. Three of his four runs allowed (one of which was unearned) were allowed in the first three innings. After the third inning he got locked in for the fourth and fifth inning facing the minimum. After two quick outs in the bottom of the sixth inning Harrell allowed the next three batters to reach base, the last one was a Carlos Gonzalez single to plate Dexter Fowler. This prompted Bo Porter to pull Harrell after his 119th pitch. Recently, called up Brad Peacok replaced Harrell and got Troy Tulowitzki to ground out to end the Rockies threat. Peacock pitched a clean 8th before handing the ball off to Wesley Wright to start the ninth.
Wright would allow a single to Gonzalez and was pulled for Hector Ambriz who allowed Gonzalez to steal second, Tulowitzki to single, Todd Helton to get a sacrifice fly. Luckily, the Astros offense showed up tonight and provided the bullpen with a cushion. Ambriz struckout Michael Cuddyer inbetween Tulowitzki and Helton's at bat and then struck out Nolan Arendao to end the game and secure the Astros first sweep of 2013.
Entering the sixth inning, the Astros trailed the Rockies 3-1. Thanks to singles by J.D Martinez, Carlos Pena and home runs by Chris Carter and Matt Dominguez (back-to-back), the Astros exited the sixth inning with a 7-3 lead.
Could this be a turning point for an Astros team that has been talked about on a weekly basis as possibly being the worst team ever? The Astros at some point have to go on a bit of a "hot streak." Mid-May last year the Astros were close to a .500 record which thrilled Astros fans every where. That's great if you're expected to lose a 100 games which the Astros eventually did but it highlights that the Astros will have good stretches at points in the season.
The Astros are really really bad. Historically so, in fact. (that didn't last long). They, of course, are 14-33, on pace for only 48 wins. They have been outscored by 89 runs. If there is one reason for optimism, however, its in how they have played against bad to mediocre teams. They are an abysmal 5-27 against teams over .500 on the season. Against these good teams, they have simply been outclassed, being outscored by 102 runs. However, against their fellow dregs, they are 9-6, and have outscored those opponents by 13 runs. Unfortunately, the 32 games against teams greater than .500 are the second most in the league, behind only Toronto. Miami, in contrast, has built their league worst record with equally poor play against good and bad teams. They are 3-16 against teams at .500 or better and 10-18 against those below. Based on Baseball Reference's strength of schedule rankings, the Astros are tied for the 2nd toughest schedule in baseball, and Miami is tied for the second easiest. The schedule gets slightly easier from here, so hopefully they can continue their good play against the poor teams, and avoid ignominy.
GIF of the Night
Astros having a little fun - this was after the MattyD home run: