Sunday, July 19, 2009

Recap for G91 - Astros @ Dodgers

Booo. The Astros didn't do much with the chances they had, and lost out on the calls on a couple of close plays, in their first loss of the second half - to the Dodgers 5-2.

Hampton was shaky early, and was stupid once, which led to his getting pulled after 5.2IP. Here's how ESPN described Hampton's error:
Mark Loretta, who came in 16-for-44 lifetime against Hampton, hit an RBI single to left that drove in Blake on a close play.

When Hampton got the ball back from catcher Humberto Quintero, the frustrated 15-year veteran tried to slam it into his glove and missed -- forcing Hampton to retrieve it near the first base dugout as Kemp scored the fifth run. At that point, Cooper replaced Hampton.

Wow. The Dodgers scored three runs in the 6th, extending their lead to 5-0 at that point.

Hampton: 5.2IP, 7H/4ER (though the 5th was on his error), 4K:2BB, 18/24 first-pitch strikes, 22/57 non-contact strikes (19 called:3 swinging)
Fulchino: 1.1IP, 0H/0ER, 2/4 FPS, 4/8 NCS (3c:1s)
Wright: 0IP, 1H/0ER, 1/1 FPS, 1/3 NCS (1c)
Arias: 1IP, 0H/0ER, 2K, 3/3 FPS, 7/10 NCS (5c:2s)

By all accounts, Hampton should have had a good game. 18 of the first 24 batters he faced got first-pitch strikes. 8 ground balls and 4 fly ball outs. 92 pitches in almost six innings. But he didn't. Which shows the limitation of statistics. Sometimes the other team hits the snot out of the ball, no matter what you throw.

Arias has now thrown 21.1 consecutive scoreless IPs.

Offensively - nothing doing against Clayton Kershaw. Kershaw's line:
7IP, 2H/0ER, 5K:1BB. However, once Kershaw left, things got interesting. James McDonald came in and immediately gave up a double to Chris Coste, who advanced to third on a wild pitch. Michaels singled in Coste, and then scored on a Juan Pierror (ha!). Bourn ran for Michaels, stole second, advanced to third on Matsui's out, and Keppinger grounded out to end the inning...or did he? Replays showed that Keppinger beat the tag, and that would have made the game 5-3, and Coop was ejected arguing the call.

In the 9th, it was pretty much all on the Astros. With Broxton pitching...

Tejada walked
Lee reached on an infield single
Pence struck out swinging
Coste struck out swinging
Berkman walked
So the bases are loaded, and Pudge is up, gets ahead of Broxton 2-0, takes the third pitch for strike one, fouls off the fourth pitch for strike two, and swings through the 5th pitch. Game over.

Coste had the only extra-base hit. The five Astros hits were scattered among five Astros. While it was an anemic offensive performance, one out of three is to be expected, especially when you're facing Wolf, Billingsley, and Kershaw in LA.

Man of the Match: Alberto Arias. 21.1 consecutive scoreless IPs.

Goat of the Game: This one goes to Pence. 0x4 with 3K, and 3LOBs. But Hampton was a deserving candidate...

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