Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Recap for ST13: Astros v. Nationals

What Happened?
The Astros scored seven runs in the first two innings and then rode it out for an 11-2 win over the Nationals to improve their Spring record to 7-6.

Why They Won
Spotting Wandy a 7-0 lead was enough to get Wandy back on track. Michael Bourn broke his Spring-long slump with a 3x3, three run day, and the Astros got multi-hit games from Pence (2x3, 2RBI), Johnson (2x4, 3RBI), and Quintero (2x3, 2RBI). Four of the Astros 13 hits were for extra bases (doubles by Johnson, Quintero, and Lee; and a homer by Michaels).

Astros pitching
Wandy got it back together, throwing a 4IP, 4H/2ER, 7K:0BB line. The bullpen threw another five scoreless IPs, and Gustavo Chacin threw 2IP, 0H/0ER, 3K in an impressive outing. But it's obviously Wandy who was the story today. Both Nationals runs came off the long ball, allowing solo shots to Taveras and Willingham in the 3rd and 4th innings, respectively. Still, Wandy recorded 12 outs amongst 16 batters, got seven Ks, with three groundouts and two flyouts.

Astros batting
Big days by Bourn, Pence, Johnson, and Quintero paced the offense, and the Astros were 7x17 with RISP today. The Astros also drew more walks than strikeouts again today (6K:7BB), with Kaz drawing three walks in three plate appearances, and scoring two runs as a result.

0-fers (more than one AB): Shelton (0x2, 1RBI), Esposito (0x2), Manzella (0x3)

Positional Battles

Catcher
Quintero: 2x3, 2RBI (.273)
Esposito: 0x2, (.167)

OF5
Sullivan: 0x1 (.143)
Bourgeois: 0x1, RBI (.077)

IF6
Maysonet: 1x2 (.421)
Shelton: 0x2, RBI, 2K (.190)
Johnson: 2x4, 3RBI, BB (.333)
Navarro: 1x2, K (.273)

Man of the Match
Chris Johnson. With 2x4, 2R, 3RBI, and a walk it's hard to ignore that he's doing more with the bat than Chris Shelton or Oswaldo Navarro. If Blum is going to be playing 1B while Lance is out, I realize Keppinger can slide over and play some 3B, but Johnson's hot bat (/snickering) is looking good (/full out laughing). He's a long shot, but credit where it's due.

Goat of the Game
Jason Bourgeois has got to start doing something. He survived the first cut, lasting longer than Alex Romero, but he's hitting .077 this year. It was brought up that Bourgeois can play some infield, which may make him more attractive, but he needs to step it up.

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