Tuesday, July 23, 2013

From the Office of the County Clerk - G98: A's at Astros

Well, nobody in the bullpen worked out, did they? The Astros had a chance to break Oakland's complete and utter mastery of them last night and improve to 1-9. But no. Four relievers, three earned runs:

*Travis Blackley allowed a home run to Chris Young, who had not hit a home run since July 2, in the 7th. Hector Ambriz, who closed out the 7th, gave up a lead-off single in the 8th to former Astro Nate Freiman. Wesley Wright came in and promptly allowed Josh Reddick to take him deep to put the A's up 4-3, the final margin of victory. Three hits. Three earned runs.
*And this is after Dallas Keuchel allowed 5H/1ER, 5K:4BB in 6IP, despite throwing first-pitch strikes to only 15 of the 27 batters he faced. Still, Keuchel had only thrown 88 pitches when he was pulled in favor of Blackley.
*Dallas Keuchel had his longest outing since June 21, and allowed three or fewer earned runs for the third straight start. His four walks are his most since July 1.

*We do have to wonder just what in the world Altuve (or whomever) was thinking when he led off the 8th inning with a walk and advanced to second on a wild pitch. With one out, Altuve took off for third with Chris Carter up, and the game at 4-3 Oakland, and got nailed at third trying to steal. To repeat: the potential game-tying run, with Chris Carter up (and, at that point 1x3), got caught stealing third base on a catcher who has a 29% Caught Stealing rate (league average is 26%).
*Regardless, A's pitchers retired 17 of the last 20 batters they faced from the 4th inning on. Altuve was the only baserunner after the 4th inning.
*In the four games since the All-Star Break, Jason Castro is 3x17 with nine strikeouts; 0x9 with six strikeouts in his last two games.

*The Astros have now lost six straight, nine of their last ten, and are 4-16 in their last twenty games.

*Man of the Match: Uh. Dallas Keuchel, I guess.
*Goat of the Game: The entire bullpen, except Jose Cisnero. Cisnero, you're okay.