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Game 6 Thread. April 4, 2023, 7:10 CT. Tigers @ Astros

Framber Valdez goes for his first win against former first-round draft pick Matt Manning of the Tigers

MLB: Detroit Tigers at Houston Astros Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

The Astros come into tonight’s game with a record of 2-3, a .400 winning percentage. Of course, even the 1927 Yankees probably had five-game stretches that were as bad as the Astros look right now, so, no need to panic.

But...the early signs are disturbing. The team ERA of 4.21 is 16th in MLB. And the team wRC+ of 81 is 23rd. Last night, a team that had scored three runs in the previous three games scored seven on the Astros staff. And the White Sox team that outscored the Astros in the opening four-game series got crushed last night by the Giants 12-3.

We knew the offense would have some holes without Jose Altuve and Michael Brantley in the lineup to start the season, but we would have expected the team to weather the storm with pitching that was at least close to last year’s quality.

Maybe it turns around tonight, as the rotation takes its second turn of the season and the rust starts to fall away. It’s Framber Valdez, who managed to keep the White Sox scoreless in the Opener despite a lot of traffic on the bases, against Matt Manning.

Here’s the lineup and media access information.