The most exciting part of Sunday's Houston Astros loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates was the Grapefruit League debut of Michael Foltynewicz. And this was with another game in which the Astros fell behind by several runs and managed to tie the game in later innings. After the first week of action I'm feeling more confident that if this team falls behind several runs there's a very good chance they can make up the deficit.
Now that I've jinxed this team and they go on to lose their remaining Spring Training games, lets move on to individual performances
The two lines that stick out on the box score are those of John Ely, who gave up three earned runs (five total), and Jordan Lyles who gave up two earned runs (three total). Those two pitchers accounted for all eight of the Pirate runs. A Brian T. Smith tweet might help to explain the struggles Lyles is having:
Why ST overreactions are dangerous: #Astros' Lyles said he's intentionally throwing all of his fastballs directly over plate. #MLB— Brian T. Smith (@ChronAstros) March 3, 2013
Remember pitchers are working on things in Spring Training that they won't get to do in the regular season. Of course if you believe Bo Porter, Lyles has not been assured a spot in the starting rotation so it as it stands Lyles needs to pitch better or he will be in Oklahoma City to start the season.
Foltynewicz on the other hand had a good appearance for the Astros in the third inning. In his one inning of work he struck out Neil Walker on three pitches, walked a Garrett Jones then got Brad Hawpe to ground into a double play. Those are real major league hitters.
Brett Wallace and Jimmy Paredes provided the Astros with some power with each collecting a double. Tyler Greene, Wallace, J.D. Martinez and Robbie Grossman all reached base multiple times. Overall the Astros got six runs on eight hits and five walks.
Astros Fan Favorite March Madness Tournament:
Don't forget to go vote in our TCB March Madness match-ups for today.
Spring Training Viewing Guide:
Helpful Do's and Don'ts to watching Astros spring games.
vs Detroit Tigers 12:05 p.m. CT start time.
Radio: KBME 790 AM
MLB Network: 7:30 p.m. CT (delayed)