Welp, there goes my bid for a perfect season. I was hoping that the Astros would win every game that I was going to recap. After a promising start, my hopes and dreams have been shattered. Oh well, I'll take .500 ball at this point:
My Recap Record: 1-1
Dexter Fowler, where art thou? After reading about Fowler's gift to his new teammates, he is quickly becoming a personal favorite. I am sure his dominant start to the season has helped just a tiny bit as well. But it looks like I have grown to appreciate him more by his absence. Fowler's impressive blend of on-base percentage, power, and speed as a leadoff hitter is a luxury, and it is something that Astros fans have not had the pleasure of watching in a while. To me, the lineup becomes much less intimidating without Fowler setting the table at the top. I personally find tonight's top 3 of Grossman-Altuve-Guzman yawn-worthy as compared to a Fowler-Grossman-Altuve top of the lineup. Hopefully Fowler can stay healthy going forward and continue to reek havoc as the leadoff hitter and be a spark for this offense.
Sticking with the offense, the only other number you need to know for tonight's loss is 0-14. That is how the offense did with runners in scoring position. I guess the silver lining is that they had so many chances, but if you do not capitalize on those opportunities, you are not going to get many W's.
On the pitching front, although Brett Oberholtzer did an admirable job of keeping the Astros in the game, I am going to focus on the bullpen. What happened to this new and improved bullpen we were promised? I am still a fan of all of the offseason signings, so I was expecting a night and day difference from last year's bullpen to the way it is currently constructed. I am hopeful that Jesse Crain's return from injury will have a Fowler-like impact and improvement to the bullpen as a whole, but as of today, it has been pretty bad. Per ESPN, before tonight's game, the Astros' bullpen collectively have a 6.57 ERA. That is good for 27th in the league. I guess considering that the bullpen was dead last last year, there has been an improvement thus far. It is still a small sample size, and we are just over a week into the season, so I do not want to overreact. But I think I will temper my expectations, and downgrade my hopes for an above average bullpen to a "bend but don't break" (most of the time hopefully) bullpen.