Thursday, August 23, 2012

From the Office of the County Clerk: G125 - Astros @ Cardinals

Dallas Keuchel (1-4, 4.99) vs Jake Westbrook (12-9, 3.50)

It was a tale of two games for the Astros. Through the midway point, Houston was playing well, fighting back, and had never trailed, leading 5-3. Then the train jumped the tracks on the bridge over the ravine. The Astros blew a lead for the 44th time this season and never recovered, falling by a 13-5 final. St. Louis completes the sweep, the Astros lose their 7th straight, and they still can't get that 40th win - now 39-86 in 2012.

*Dallas Keuchel started out very strong, allowing only one base runner on a single through the first 3.2 innings. A walk/double/homer trifecta then got the Cardinals on the board, but Keuchel escaped the inning thereafter still holding a 4-3 lead. After that... well, he finished with this line: 4 IP / 5 H / 6 R / 5 ER / 1 BB / 2 K. Hector Ambriz came on to make his Astros debut in a bases-loaded, no-out situation, and he didn't do well, allowing all three inherited runners and two of his own to score. Mickey Storey allowed a run in two innings, Xavier Cedeno managed three runs while recording only one out, and Rhiner Cruz finished up with a run and four hits in the final 0.2.


*The offense, as noted, was admirable through the first five innings, jumping on Jake Westbrook for five runs on seven hits, two walks, and three sacrifice flies.

*After losing the lead, they scratched out a walk and four singles (no runs) over the final four frames.

*Five Astros had multi-hit games, accounting for all of Houston's 11 hits.

*Ben Francisco went 3 for 5 with a double and a run scored.

*Fernando Martinez was 2 for 4 with two doubles, a walk, and two runs scored.

*Brett Wallace went 2 for 5 with a double and a run scored.

*Jose Altuve went 2 for 4 with two RBIs.

*Altuve, Keuchel, and Scott Moore had the sacrifice flies.

Turning Point:

That dagblasted bottom of the 5th. Single, single, error Wallace on a sac bunt, Keuchel out. Ambriz in, single (run), double (3 runs), strikeout, single (run), out on a rundown, walk, strikeout. A 5-3 Astros lead was flipped to an 8-5 deficit, and ultimately the 13-5 loss.

Man of the Match:

Fernando Martinez. He's struggled in Houston so far, but perhaps more regular playing time is helping him turn that around.

Goat of the Game:

Everyone in an Astros uniform that touched the pitching rubber today.