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Game 147 Thread. Sept 13, 2023, 6:10 CT. A’s @ Astros

Hunter Brown is the stopper?

MLB: New York Yankees at Houston Astros Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Remember the thrill of victory after sweeping the Rangers last week? Do you remember reveling in their agony of defeat?

Unless Hunter Brown on the pitching side and the Astros offense can turn things around, the Astros might get to experience the same agony of defeat, only to the second-worst team in baseball.

The Astros are one game up in the AL West standings and only 1.5 games up in the standings for the third Wild Card berth. A loss tonight could subtract one from each of those numbers.

And who is the stopper? Hunter Brown. In his last six games, he has pitched only 24 innings with an 8.25 ERA.

Justin Verlander, the ostensible #2 starter in a playoff scenario, gave up five runs and two home runs in seven innings last night. In his last three starts, he has allowed 6, 1, and 5 earned runs, respectively, for a 5.40 ERA.

He and Framber Valdez are the only pitchers that currently faintly resemble top-of, even middle-of-rotation starters, and neither beat the Oakland A’s. What happens when they face a playoff team?

Of course, no help from the bats. They managed only two runs in the last two games. That after scoring 60 runs in the previous six games.

So tonight, after losing two games using their only two serviceable starters at this point in the season, the Astros are trying to avoid a sweep behind Hunter Brown.

Good luck Stros. Not much faith in Brown, but maybe the bats will wake up.