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Interleague Matchup/Game Thread Game # 64 at Baltimore

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Wandy Rodriguez   Rodrigo Lopez
2 - 2, 8.41 5 - 2, 4.52

Wandy Rodriguez, coming off the best start of his brief major league career, faces off tonight against the Orioles' erstwhile ace Rodrigo Lopez, and let's be honest here: my hopes are not high.

Rodriguez is 228th in the league in ERA (that's bad!), but also two spots ahead of Tim Redding in that same category (which makes me feel good!). There are other names on that list below Wandy's that you might have heard of, like Tom Martin, and Gavin Floyd, and Kerry Ligtenberg, and Tim Worrell, and Kevin Jarvis.

Also Ezequiel Astacio and Brandon Duckworth. That Houston has each and every pitcher it has tried in the fifth slot in the bottom 60 of the league ERA lists probably imparts more information than I'm willing to process.

And when I see that each of those three--Duckworth, Astacio, Rodriguez--has a higher ERA than any other pitcher with more than one game started in the history of the organization, well, the brain clicks off and the eyes go ga-ga.

We need a fifth starter, and we need one bad. Not 'cause we need to win, but because it's been getting embarassing.

Astros All-Time Worst Starters, Career
(min 2 GS)
Name ERA GS
*Ezequiel Astacio 10.98 4
*Wandy Rodriguez   8.41 4
*Brandon Duckworth   8.11 8
  Brian Moehler   7.04 3
----
* Pitched for 'Stros in five-slot this year
Again, Wandy's coming off a good start (yes, the ERA was actually HIGHER), and if he does well tonight, he can take hold of the spot, and ease the sleeping hours of many an Astro fan, as well as smooth out these horrible-looking stats.

As they say, we shall see.

Also, since this is the Orioles, I wanted to write a little bit about their third baseman Melvin Mora, and how he used to be an Astros farmhand, until we let him go so he could be a star elsewhere. But I'm running out of time 'til first pitch.

So I'll just say that perhaps one tends to overrate your own players, no? A quick comparison of Mora since 2000 with Ensberg shows that Mora has obviously been the better player. And IS the better player, even this year, just based on the runs they're involved in.

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Can't coulda or shoulda or woulda, huh? I guess you could argue that the curve is still moving up with Ensberg and that with Mora, he's already peaked. But with Ensberg already 29, I wouldn't be so sure of that. . . .