Let's take a break from Day 10 of the Hurricane Bad News to talk about good things. Happy things. Burninating things.
Though the Astros haven't played since Sunday, we can still hand out awards based on their play in the previous week. Plus, we get to talk about something fun for a change. You can't wait for Saturday? I can't wait, either. May be making a pilgrimage to Killen's BBQ. Super stoked about that. Not gonna let any pesky hurricanes take me down today.
The Insurance Agent brought some serious heat with his bat. For the first time this year, Grossman hit consistently in the majors. Over the last week and in 21 plate appearances, Grossman hit .353/.476/.588 with a home run and a double. Considering the slightly-lower-than-that line he'd sported previously in the majors, it was nice to see.
Does he still struggle defensively? Most assuredly, yes. Does he still lack the power of a traditional corner outfield bat? Absolutely. But, let's enjoy this while it lasts. He's earned back the "Bob" moniker. Don't make us strip it away from you again, Grossman.
The other day, a co-worker came by my desk raving about Corp. The bad certainly has been hot and his defense has always been good. Right now, Corporan is exactly what you want out of a backup catcher. He's providing capable play in pinch starts with Castro hurt and helping the Astros avoid having another black hole of production in the lineup.
In four games and 15 plate appearances, Corporan hit .400/.400/.600. That's three singles, three doubles, two strikeouts and a walk, for those non-mathletes out there. He also grounded into a double play because catchers are slow, but other than that, he was a positive force for Houston. It was enough to score him his first honorable mention of the season. Jesus Guzman, Corp's comin' for you, next.
For a second straight week, it's Chris Carter. The All-Star break couldn't have come at a worse time for the resurgent Carter, who's hit six home runs in his last 10 games with a 226 wRC+ and a .366 on-base percentage.
Of course, the strikeouts are still there. In that two-week stretch, Carter barely avoided striking out 30 percent of the time. But, when he's getting on base at a clip only two players on the team can match (Altuve, Fowler), his strikeouts don't hurt as much.
Again, that's the problem with this roster. For ever week Carter gets red-hot, there are three weeks when his strikeouts don't get off-set and the offense suffers. Take Carter's June for instance. In 22 games, he hit five home runs (good). Yet, he also struck out 29 times in 74 plate appearances (bad) and only connected on six other base hits all month (super bad).
If Dexter Fowler, George Springer, Jose Altuve and some other guys in the lineup are all hitting, Carter can be hidden in his slumps. Other times, Carter can be one of the guys carrying the lineup, like he's done this month. But, when Singleton and Springer go through typical rookie struggles, when Altuve cools off slightly and when Fowler hits the disabled list, Carter and the rest of the lineup are exposed badly.
That's how seven-game losing streaks are born.
For now, though, let's enjoy Trogdor burninating the countryside, until he goes back down to fanning those flames down to embers with all his swing-throughs.