Tuesday, May 15, 2012

From the Office of the County Clerk - G36: Astros @ Phillies

Jordan Lyles (0-0, 0.00) vs Cliff Lee (0-1, 2.17)

The Astros fought back from an early deficit with a 2 run 9th off Phillies closer Chad Qualls, but it was all for naught as Hunter Pence hit a walk off homerun in the bottom of the 12th to send the Astros to their 4th straight loss. They now sit at 15-21, while the Phillies move to 18-19.

*Jordan Lyles was brought up to make his first start of the season. He started 20 games last year going 2-8 with a 5.36 ERA and 1.42 WHIP. He held his own today, pitching 6.0 innings and giving up 3 runs (only 1 earned). He walked 1 and struckout 4. Abad, Rodriguez and Lyon each got work, and combined for 3 innings of shutout baseball, before Brett Myers was brought in. He got one out before giving up a walkoff homerun to former Astro Hunter Pence, and was saddled with the loss (his first of the year).

Observations:

*2 of the Phillies runs were unearned thanks to a Jose Altuve throwing error in the bottom of the 2nd. Lyles got the first out before Mayberry Jr. reached on the error. Lyles then retired Galvis for the second out, before giving up a 2 run shot to Brian Schneider.

*Jordan Schafer got the day off (sort of - he did come in a pinch hitter later in the game and went 1 for 2 with a run scored), and Jose Altuve got his shot in the leadoff spot. He went 0 for 5 and is just the latest Astro to enter a big bad slump. On May 5th he was hitting .346 with a .389 OBP and a .918 OPS. With a for "0 fer's" in there, he is now down to .309 and .354 with a .803 OPS. Still all great numbers, but he has struggled lately.

*JD Martinez returned to the lineup and FINALLY batted from the #6 spot. Why didn't Mills figure this out earlier? Move the guy down and let him (likely) see some better pitches. He had a pretty nice 2 for 4 day (although he did strikeout twice).

*The Astros struck out 13 times today and walked only once. Ouch.

*The Astros attemped two stolen bases today - Bogusevic was successful and Maxwell was not.

Turning Point:

The Astros 2 run 9th came at the expense of former Astro Chad Qualls. Although the Pence homerun won the game, I would still consider the 9th the turning point as it did put the Astros in a position to sneak away with a win.

Man of the Match:

Give it to Jordan Lyles in his first Major League start of 2012. He came to Philly on short notice and pitched a great game against a fairly potent offense. He deserved a better fate, but looked good in today's game.

Goat of the Game:

Brett Myers. After a hot start to the season, he's blown a save and taken a loss in his last 2 outings. Giving it up to former Astro (who I wish was still an Astro) Hunter Pence was the icing on the Goat cake.

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