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Lyles Struggles In Encore, Astros Lose 7-2

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SAN DIEGO, CA - JUNE 5: Jordan Lyles #41of the Houston Astros pitches during the first inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park on June 5, 2011 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
SAN DIEGO, CA - JUNE 5: Jordan Lyles #41of the Houston Astros pitches during the first inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park on June 5, 2011 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
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After Jordan Lyles' fantastic debut at Wrigley last Tuesday night, I was very anxious to see how he pitched today at San Diego. His performance was disappointing, to say the least. We learned a lot about the youngster early in the first inning when he gave up three runs and threw 31 pitches. Lyles was getting behind on almost every Padres hitter, and he had trouble locating his fastball early on. He was able to pitch a perfect second inning while striking out two, but the rest of the game was a real struggle for Lyles. He only lasted four innings while allowing four runs on 96 pitches. He also hit a couple batters, and his control just wasn't there tonight.

Mat Latos started two games last year against the Astros, and he threw 16 scoreless innings while only allowing six hits. You could say that he had really owned the Astros in 2010, but tonight was a little different story. Latos lasted five innings, and he surrendered six hits and two runs. Unfortunately the San Diego bullpen, one of the best in the majors, preserved the Padres lead after Latos departed.

Aside from Thursday's series opener, the offense has really been slumping lately. We couldn't hit with runners in scoring position, and there wasn't much production from the bottom of the order. On a different note, it was nice to see Hunter Pence extend his hitting streak to 17 games with his fifth inning RBI single, and that is a new career high for him.

I guess it's a good thing that today's game wasn't televised because it certainly was a rough way to finish this San Diego series. With an off day tomorrow to fully concentrate on the draft, let's get back into the win column on Tuesday night when the Cardinals come to town.

Who gets demoted when Wandy comes back from his stint on the DL? Is it Lyles? Or does Mills move Aneury to the bullpen?