Isn't this what an ace is supposed to do- stop losing streaks? Albeit the Astros had a modest skid at only two games, it felt like much, much more. Roy Oswalt took the ball and tossed a beatiful eight inning performance in which he allowed a scant three hits, while striking out six Giants.
Backing him were three home runs: two by our All Stars Tejada and Pence, and one by Jason Michaels. Jeff Keppinger didn't go yard, but he did go 3/4 at the dish, as he again pummelled a left handed starting pitcher. That left handed pitcher just happened to be sure fire Hall of Famer Randy Johnson. Today though, he wasn't able to make it through the fourth inning after being forced to leave after just 3.2 innings pitched with an injured left shoulder.
After bludgeoning the Astros pitchers for the first two games, the Giants offense left today injured as well. Their only extra base hit was Rich Aurilia's solo home run, and the team had only four base runners in total. In their defense, just as the Astros struggled to hit off Giants ace Tim Lincecum, Roy Oswalt was nearly as masterful this afternoon. He controlled all of his pitches well, throwing 69 of his 94 pitches for strikes. Economical for a second consecutive start, Oswalt was able to get through eight innings, needing only 94 pitches to do so.
For those keeping track, this is Roy's third consecutive start in which he has given up only one run. On June 6, his ERA was a pedestrian 4.66. A month later it stands at 3.81. How Roy goes, so goes this team. Today proved just how true a statement that is.