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Matchup/Game Thread Houston Astros vs. Washington Nationals 7:05 CDT

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John Lannan Juan Gutierrez
1 - 2, 3.20 0 - 0, 4.50

Juan Gutierrez (5 - 9, 3.96 at Round Rock) becomes our seventh starting pitcher of the year, and our 37th of the Enron/Minute Maid Era. Time will tell whether he'll be another Rodrigo Rosario, another Brandon Backe, or even another Roy Oswalt, but for tonight, I'll be happy if he gives 5 innings or more while giving up 4 or less.

It shouldn't be too difficult, because despite what we may have seen over the last three games, these ARE the Nationals, and they ARE last in the league in runs scored.

I doubt Gutierrez would admit as much, but I bet you he's thanking his lucky stars that his first start is coming against Washington, rather than the Phillies, or the Braves.

I'm going to do everything I can to watch tonight's game from a relaxed and flat position, but unfortunately will not be able to bring my inexpert though caustic opinion to these pages: I've got some kind of brutal sciatic pain, and sitting for more than ten or fifteen minutes brings on pain that becomes excruciating.