The Astros romped last night against the Cardinals, 14-0, but that is little consolation for the news that the Astros ace, Framber Valdez, may be out for a considerable portion of 2021 with a finger fracture, pending further tests.
Still, 14 runs on 12 hits is a nice breakout from the previous hitting doldrums the team has endured in earlier games. Myles Straw continued his hot streak, getting a double in two at bats, and is currently sporting a .667 batting average for the Spring. Michael Brantley added two hits and two RBI.
Astros pitching held the Cards to just three hits. Lance McCullers started with a perfect first inning pitching in the mid-90’s on his heater, and an old “prospect” we haven’t heard from in a while, Francis Martes, followed McCullers with a perfect inning and two k’s.
Unfortunately, eight Astros pitchers are currently under a COVID protocol, including Martes, as well as Luis Garcia, Bryan Abreu, Ronel Blanco, Pedro Baez, Cristian Javier, Enoli Paredes, and Hector Velazquez. It is not clear whether these players have tested positive or have merely been exposed to someone else who has.
Alex Bregman and slugger Yordan Alvarez continue to progress from their injuries, hamstring and knees, respectively, but they are being treated cautiously, and are not in today’s lineup.
Here’s today’s lineup. Carlos Correa gets a shot at leadoff.
Alex De Goti...........3B
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