Houston ended a three-game skid on Sunday and held a nice shindig for Roy Oswalt and Lance Berkman on Saturday, but what else went on this weekend in Astros baseball? Glad you asked...
On Friday, Lucas Harrell got blown the hell up. The erstwhile fourth starter allowed seven hits and five runs in three innings while striking out three, walking three and giving up a home run to Mike Trout. Jerome Williams didn't fare much better in relief, giving up six runs in three innings before Anthony Bass threw 2 1/3 scoreless innings to close out the game.
BTW, on the offensive front, things were hurt by Dexter Fowler missing time with gastroenteritis and Jason Castro missing time after being hit on the foot by Ivan Nova last Thursday. But, that doesn't excuse the horrid nature of Friday's game. From leistomania's recap:
Hitters struck out a whopping 15 times total, though they did combine for seven walks, a positive trend in these first four games. Alex Presley, Robbie Grossman and Marc Krauss all struck out three times apiece. Grossman and Krauss have started out slow at the plate, and Presley still hasn't shown much after starting a third game in a row.
Those offensive struggles continued onto Saturday night, when Dallas Keuchel pitched okay, but gave up one too many extra-base hit as Houston fell 5-1. Keuchel's worst mistake came after he got past Mike Trout and Albert Pujols with a runner on base. Josh Hamilton made him pay with a blast to right field that made it 4-1 Angels.
That obscured one of the best parts of Saturday, when Houston honored Lance Berkman and Roy Oswalt. Ryan did this great infographic of their time with the team. Pretty much check that out and his post from this morning on the subject.
Oh, and Houston also removed Chia-Jen Lo from the 40-man roster on Saturday. They did not make an immediate roster move to fill the space, which could mean something and could mean nothing at all. Houston's front office values that 40-man space and, as Evan Drellich pointed out, the Astros are only guaranteed the No. 1 waiver priority for the first 30 days of the season.
Houston bounced back on Sunday, hitting five home runs as they routed the Angels 7-3. Well, it felt like more of a rout than reality showed by the end. Scott Feldman was again very good, giving up just one run in seven innings of work. No Fowler, but Castro's return helped lead the offense to destroy Jered Weaver pretty good.
Houston looks for the series split with the Angels Monday, as Jarred Cosart faces off with C.J. Wilson.