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Game Recap: Ignominious End to a Not So August Month. Halos Over Stros 3-0

Rookie pitcher Framber Valdez Shines again. Offense lays another egg.

MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Houston Astros Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The main story tonight: Tyler White did not hit a home run.

Therefore, the Astros did not score a run. If you take away the two ninth inning home runs by Tyler White in the previous two games, the Astros would be 23 straight innings without a run.

That’s despite Jose Altuve going 7 for 9 in the last two games. SEVEN OF NINE STRIKEOUTS that is. Altuve and Carlos Correa have left the bases loaded scoring no runs in three of the last four games.

Manager A. J. Hinch blamed it on the umpire, and got ejected from the game. ( In all fairness the ump was one of the worst in a very bad lot)

In the third inning with runners on first and third and one out, Angels pitcher Jaime Barria retired Alex Bregman and Altuve.

In the eighth Josh Reddick singled and advanced to third on a Tony Kemp double. But George Springer struck out, Bregman walked, Altuve struck out, and Correa popped up, leaving the bases loaded and scoring no runs.

So the eighth and ninth batters get on second and third, no outs, and George Springer, Alex Bregman, Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa can't score even one of them. Houston, we have.... Oh never mind.

In total the Astros were 0-8 with runners in scoring position. In their last four games the Astros have 6, 7, 8 and 6 hits respectively.

No more we’re injured excuses. Here’s a fun fact. Who has the highest OPS among these five Astros. Would it be A. Yuli Gurriel B. George Springer C. Carlos Correa D. Josh Reddick or E. Tony Kemp.

If you guessed E, Tony Kemp, .787, you’ve been watching the games.

Here’s another fun fact. Who has been the best Astros starter over their last three starts. A. Justin Verlander, B. Dallas Keuchel C. Gerrit Cole, or D. Framber Valdez.

Since you already know we’ve entered Bizarro World, of course the answer is Framber Valdez, with a 1.26 ERA, which happens to be his career ERA. FYI Verlander—5.40. Keuchel—4.82. Cole—3.71.

And yet young Framber, after only giving up one run of dubious provenance, took tonight’s loss. Dubious, because in the sixth inning he faced one batter, Kole Calhoun, whom he walked. Collin McHugh, ERA 9.00 in his last six appearances, before even making a pitch, advanced the runner with an over- throw on a pick off attempt. David Fletcher then singled Calhoun to third, who then scored on a Mike Trout sac fly, the only run charged to Valdez. Then the big blow, an Andrelton Simmons 2 run homer.

But really, since Tyler White did not hit a homer tonight, Simmons’ two run blast turned out to be superfluous.

Tomorrow Felix Pena faces Josh James. Who dat? Josh James is the Astro, making his big league debut.

Here’s Josh James

He’s 6-4 with Fresno, with a 3.40 ERA, 133 K’s in 92.2 innings. Welcome young man.

The Astros are 18-18 since the All Star break. Meanwhile the A's beat Seattle and have cut the Astros lead to 1.5 games in the AL West.

Game time 6:10 CDT

Box score and video here.