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Game 9 Preview. Aug 2, 2020, 3:10 CDT. Astros @ Angels

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Is there a diabolical new virus designed to attack the arms of Houston Astros pitchers exclusively?

MLB: Los Angeles Dodgers at Houston Astros Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports

The Astros lost a 10 inning thriller last night to the Angels, in no small part due to an arm injury to Roberto Osuna. Called in to save a ninth inning one run lead, the Astros’ most dependable reliever left after the first batter with arm soreness. His replacement, Cy Sneed, promptly gave up a run tying double, and of course, the Astros ended up losing in extra innings.

The extent of the injury is still unknown. An MRI is scheduled.

The Astros have used 18 pitchers in 8 games, and will probably have 11 rookies on the roster by today’s game. eleven rookies. That has to be a record.

With Chris Devenski placed on IL, the Astros activated AA taxi-squader Carlos Sanabria. To replace Osuna, the Astros will probably activate Humberto Castellanos, another rookie if activated.

On the brighter side, Ryan Pressly saw his first action of the season last night, although he surrendered a run, and had problems with bleeding under his thumb.

Today is the anniversary of the trade that sent Josh Fields to the Dodgers for Yordan Alvarez. Anyone know where Fields is hanging out these days?

The Halos send out Shohei Ohtani in the rubber match of this three game series. He pitched last Sunday without recording an out. His ERA is officially listed at infinity. More troubling perhaps to the Angels, his fastball topped out in the low nineties. Did his elbow injury destroy his pitching career before it even began? Already people are asking: “What could have been?”

If Josh James doesn’t learn how to throw strikes, people are going to be asking the same question about him. In 2018 James and Ohtani were in competition to see who could throw the fastest among MLB starters. James still has flames, but they don’t burn the strike zone nearly often enough.

In his first game this year James allowed three runs in three innings, and allowed five walks along with his five strikeouts. A 2.67 WHIP won’t keep you around very long.

Unless you’re on the Astros and Humberto Castellanos is your replacement.

But what about Top 10 Prospect Forrest Whitley? Oh yeah, he has “arm discomfort” too. AND HE HASN’T EVEN BEEN PITCHING.

So tell me it’s not a conspiracy cooked up in some military grade lab in LA or the East Coast.

Verlander, Pressly, Osuna, Devenski, Peacock, Biagini and Austin Pruitt all have arm problems. It probably started with Lance Mccullers in 2018 and has spread virally to every other veteran pitcher except three. Give M95 masks to Josh James, Framber Valdez and Zack Greinke, or find out why they have special immunity and develop a vaccine.

Quarantine all Astros pitchers immediately.

The Astros are 4-4 for the season and tied with the A’s for first place in the NL West.

Go Stros