Saturday, July 21, 2012

From the Office of the County Clerk: G94 - Astros @ Diamondbacks

Bud Norris (5-7, 4.70) vs Trevor Cahill (7-8, 3.71)

I suppose we'll start with the good news: the Astros offense finally awakened, scoring more runs than they had in any game since June 23. They had more hits than in any game since June 2. But Bud Norris also gave up more runs than any Houston starter since June 2, so the Astros still lost to Arizona, 13-8. The loss drops Houston to 34-60, three games ahead of their 31-63 pace at this point a year ago.

*Studly Cuddly Budly was anything but studly last night, surrendering 9 runs to match his season worst from May 31 (although he managed the feat in just 1.2 innings that day). Bud's ugly line: 4.1 IP / 6 H / 9 R / 9 ER / 5 BB / 7 K. Enerio Del Rosario inherited two runners from Bud in the 5th, allowing one to score. Abad gave up two doubles in the 6th, but still escaped with a scoreless inning thanks to a caught stealing in between. Rhiner Cruz came on in the 7th and gave up three singles and a walk in a third of an inning, letting in one run and leaving the bases loaded for Wesley Wright, who allowed all three runners to score before striking out the next two D-backs hitters. Finally, Francisco Cordero pitched a perfect 8th in his Astros debut.


*Plenty of offense to go around, with 8 runs, 14 hits, and 3 walks. Only Brian Bixler took an 0-fer among Houston's starters (including Bud), but even he got an RBI on a fielding error in the 6th.

*Carlos Corporan actually had a nice night at the plate, going 2 for 4 with an RBI double in the 6th and his first career big-league HR in the 8th.

*Jordan Schafer (2 for 4, BB), Marwin Gonzalez (2 for 5, RBI), and Matt Downs (2 for 4, SAC) also had multi-hit games, and each had a double.

*Schafer was caught stealing twice in two attempts against Miguel Montero (NL-best 47% CS%).

*Ben Francisco also made his Astros debut, singling in a pinch-hit appearance in the 8th.

*Scott Moore came in to replace Chris Johnson in the 6th after CJ fouled a ball off his leg, then Moore lauched a 3-run HR in the 9th to conclude Houston's scoring.

Turning Point:

Arizona already had a 4-2 lead at the time, but the bottom of the 5th was when they put the game away.  Bud's inning went like this: double, fly out, walk, walk, walk, single, pitching change. Then Del Rosario came in and gave up a double and a single, while recording his two outs on plays at the plate. It all added up to a 5-run inning for the D-backs.

Man of the Match:

Going with Carlos Corporan. While Moore had more RBIs (3 vs. 2), a career .193 hitter deserves credit for a multi-hit, multi-RBI game including his first career homer.

Goat of the Game:

Bud Norris. His 5.33 ERA is now worst among Astros starters, and he's put up an even uglier 8.54 figure in his last 8 starts since he was at 3.14 after his first 9. Whatever is wrong, he needs to get himself sorted out.