Saturday, July 7, 2012

From the Office of the County Clerk: G85 - Astros v. Brewers


Zach Greinke (9-2, 3.08) vs Wandy Rodriguez (6-6, 3.54)

Happy recap time! Maybe the Astros caught a break, as Zach Greinke was ejected from the game after only four pitches, but they still deserve credit for taking full advantage of the situation. Wandy put on a show for all the scouts in town, the entire offense came to life, and the Astros win 6-3 to snap their 9-game losing streak. They're now 33-52 and NOT in last place, as the Cubs and Rockies both lost today.

*Magic Wandy pitched strong into the 6th, and he would have finished six scoreless were it not for two fielding errors by Scott Moore in the 6th that allowed two runs to score. Wandy's winning line: 5.1 IP / 4 H / 2 R / 0 ER / 2 BB / 5 K. Then began a patented Brad Mills parade of Astros relievers - Fernando Rodriguez, Wright, Lyon, Abad, and Del Rosario combined for 2.2 IP / 3 H / 1 R / 1 ER / 1 BB / 2 K, with Lyon responsible for the only run. Brett Myers pitched a perfect 9th for his 18th save.

Observations:

*Jordan Schafer stroked a triple on Greinke's first pitch, the first of 13 Houston hits on the day. Schafer would go 2 for 4 with a steal and 2 runs scored.

*Jose Altuve responded to falling below .300 by going 3 for 4 with a walk, a steal, and a RBI, raising his average back up to .304. It was Altuve's 8th game with 3 or more hits, and his first since June 5.

*J.D. Martinez likewise turned in a 3-hit performance, going 3 for 4 with a run scored. It was J.D.'s fourth 3-hit game of the season.

*Jed Lowrie was 2 for 4 with a double, a RBI, and two runs scored. He's now 5 for 16 (.313) since bottoming out at .253 on July 2.

*Scott Moore's defensive misadventures at 3B in the 6th made us long for the days of "Soft Hands" CJ (not really), but he homered for the second day in a row and the third time in 31 ABs since getting the call from OKC. He's a former first round pick (8th overall) by Detroit in 2002, and he's hitting like it so far in Houston.

*Jason Castro was the only Astros starting position player without a hit, but he still drove in two runs on sacrifice flies, for an odd 0 for 2, 1 K, 2 RBI line.

*Chris Johnson added a double and Brian Bogusevic a single for Houston's other hits.

Turning Point:

After Schafer's leadoff triple, Altuve hit a grounder to the left of first three pitches later. Jose beat Greinke to the bag for an infield single and an RBI, and Greinke spiked the ball in the dirt out of frustration. First-base umpire Sam Holbrook immediately gave Greinke the heave-ho, then tossed Brewers manager Ron Roenicke right behind him after Roenicke came out to argue. Almost-Astro Livan Hernandez came out of the dugout in relief, and Houston responded with three more runs in his three innings for all the offense they would need.

Man of the Match:

Wandy! He was a streak-stopper today, giving the Astros exactly what they needed.

Goat of the Game:

Scott Moore. Home run notwithstanding, he gave up more runs on defense than he created on offense today. But still, happy day! Astros win.

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