This season the Astros announced they plan to remove Tal's Hill this offseason. But it wasn't quick enough for it to help the Astros last night. Carlos Correa stepped to the plate with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, the Angels closer Huston Street waiting for him.
Correa ripped a 2-2 slider from Street deep to center field. The ball was clearly going to beyond the reach of all-world centerfielder Mike Trout. The only question was it going to say in the park. A complicated question in Minute Maid Park, center field is 436 feet away with roughly six foot tall hill and 4 foot tall wall on top of that. The ballpark held it, unfortunate for the Astros who are fighting with the Angels for a playoff spot.
Correa ended up with a double. If this was 2016, we would have been talking about Carlos Correa's game-tying home run on his birthday.
This is exact example of why general manager Jeff Luhnow, president Reid Ryan, and the Astros want to change the layout of the ballpark. There is no doubt that Carlos Correa got all of that pitch, but he wasn't rewarded with a home run. The Astros can't afford to lose a game because of a novelty feature in their own ballpark.
I admit I've always been a fan of Tal's Hill, but this was the final straw. I'm ready to let it go after last night, and yes I will blame the playoff hunt on my change of heart.
Yes, it will lead to more opponent's home runs as well, but players like Correa and George Springer will use the shorter centerfield distance to full advantage. Too bad it's happen next season.