Though the Astros ultimately lost 2-1 yesterday there was a lot to be happy about with the pitching from the game. Greinke looked solid in his second Spring Training outing and his velocity topped out at 91 mph, which is a rarity for him during ST games. He would come away from an easy 3 IP with just 2 hits surrendered and a couple of punchouts.
We also got to see Pressly and Osuna in action for the first time this spring, who figure to be the back end of the bullpen for the Astros in 2020. Pressly looked good after ending last season with knee issues. He spun an inning of no-run ball, though he did give up a walk. Osuna was perfect in his outing, inducing weak contact for all three of his outs.
Astros fans got to see Devo on the mound in the 9th for his first inning of work in 2020. He also tossed a perfect inning, getting all three outs in the field.
The lone blemish was an 8th inning two-run homer surrendered by Austin Pruitt, who is currently in the mix for the 5th starter job. That ball was helped out of the park by the wind though, and are the only two runs on Pruitt’s ledger this spring.
The batting left something to be desired, which is still behind the pitching according to manager Dusty Baker. The lone run was batted in by Michael Brantley, who is having a fantastic spring, when he smacked a 3rd-inning double that brought in Springer. The catching platoon of Garneau and Stubbs also had a hit each, both of whom are also enjoying Grapefruit League play. Springer is the only other regular who had a hit yesterday along with Superjack Mayfield, who looks to once again be solid depth in 2020.
The Astros will sit the big boys for the game in Fort Myers today, with a lineup that features mostly minor league depth and players looking to compete for final roster spots. Straw will lead it off, who looks like he has the inside lane for the 26th spot on the Astros roster in 2020. Stubbs will get the start behind the dish roday, who also appears to be a candidate for the Opening Day roster in Houston.
They’ll face off against what looks to mostly be the Red Sox’s MLB lineup, which will provide the biggest challenge of the spring for Josh James, who is on the bump this afternoon. James is currently in the mix for the fifth rotation spot for Houston and his only other outing this spring was a 2 inning relief performance where he looked pretty sharp, striking out three without allowing any base runners.
Boston counters with Kyle Hart, who is fighting for a rotation spot in Fenway this season. He has yet to make an MLB opening day roster, but has looked decent to good in the minors. The lefty has been in Boston’s system since 2016, when he was drafted in the 19th round. With Price being traded and Sale going down to injury, this looks like his first real shot at making an MLB rotation, so expect him to try and impress.
Astros vs. Red Sox pic.twitter.com/M5Nkp3LzCl— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) March 5, 2020
First Pitch is at 12:05 PM EST.
You can listen to the game on the Astros’ feed at KBME 790 AM / 94.5 FM or Boston’s at WEEI 850, or stream either on the MLB At Bat app.
There is no video feed being streamed today.