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Houston Astros : 2nd Place

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With the win last night and the Cardinals loss, the Astros moved into 2nd place in the NL Central, just 1 1/2 games behind the Cubs and a 1/2 game ahead of the Cardinals. 

One of the issues talked about over the off season was how with all of the changes that were made, would this team have "chemistry".  Well, if you ask the Astros, it seems that it didn't hurt anything and could have actually helped.

The word "chemistry" was mentioned more than a half-dozen times by several Astros figures following this win. The Astros are starting to believe, which should come as no surprise, considering they've lost only twice in the last two weeks.

"It's pretty special," Loretta said. "I've always been asked about team chemistry and what it is. A lot of people say team chemistry is as good as the next starting pitcher. But that's usually from people that don't have team chemistry. I really feel this team chemistry is as good as I've ever seen.

"You just feel everybody pulling for each other, mixing young guys, older guys. It's just a real cohesive unit. At this point we expect to come back, no matter what. It's pretty cool."

Berkman, who during the offseason publicly wondered if team chemistry would be an issue, marveled at the Astros' recent accomplishments.

"It's hard to explain," he said. "I think we've got guys, everybody on the team, takes a lot of pride in their work. Everybody that goes up there is really having good at-bats. You see a lot of fight. You see a lot of guys that are -- even though we're down four or five runs -- are still trying to have a good quality at-bat."

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