Thursday, August 15, 2013

From the Office of the County Clerk - G119: Astros @ Athletics

Jarred Cosart (1-0, 1.36) vs Jarrod Parker (8-6, 4.04)

Now THAT was worth staying up for. Great defense, solid pitching, plenty of drama, and a happy ending - Astros beat the A's 2-1 in 11, assuring themselves of their first series win since June 18-20 against Milwaukee. Houston improves again to 39-80 overall.

On the Mound:

*Oh, Jarred Cosart. You're trying really hard to become my new favorite Astro, and you're doing a dang fine job of it too. A line of 6 IP / 3 H / 0 R / 0 ER / 1 BB / 4 K tonight, and you've still yet to give up more than 2 runs in any of your 6 starts so far.

*When last we saw Philip Humber... actually, let's not talk about when last we saw Philip Humber. Tonight he wasn't as bad as all that, but he did give up the tying run on 3 hits in his 1.1 IP. Still don't like you, Philip Humber.

*Add Kevin Chapman to Chia-Jen Lo on the list of Astros Relievers Who Might Actually Be Worth a Crap. Chapman threw 1.2 perfect tonight and, like Lo, maintained a perfect ERA, now through four appearances.

*Lucas Harrell came into tonight with a 6.86 ERA and 0 scoreless appearances (out of 7) since being demoted to the bullpen. So his entry in the 10th didn't exactly inspire a lot of confidence for Astros fans. But thanks to a Trout-esque HR-robbing catch by Robbie Grossman on Chris Young, he twirled a perfect frame tonight.

*Josh Fields had to keep things interesting, allowing a double to Eric Sogard on his first pitch of the 11th. But a botched sac bunt followed by two K's secure his second save and Houston's first series win over Oakland.

At the Plate:

*cHRis Carter's big bat was back in his old home park, knocking a solo shot in the 7th for his 22nd of the season. He finished 1 for 5 with 2 K.

*Jonathan Villar was big with the stick too, going 3 for 4.

*Jose Altuve keyed the 11th inning rally with a one-out single, finishing 2 for 5 with a run scored.

*Carlos Corporan was the big hero, doubling home Altuve for the game-winning RBI in his only plate appearance.

*Robbie Grossman (1 for 5, K), Brett Wallace (1 for 4, 3 K), Jason Castro (1 for 4, 2 K), and L.J. Hoes (1 for 4) each added a single apiece.

*Brandon Barnes went 0 for 4 with 2 K at the plate, but he added value with his gold-worthy glove, making a leaping catch on Seth Smith with one on in the 6th, then gunning down Eric Sogard at third after a Nate Freiman fly ball to end the 8th (and get Bob Melvin ejected).

Turning Point:

Jake Elmore pinch hit and started the 11th by popping out on foul ground, but Jose Altuve followed with a single to left. One pitch later, Carlos Corporan doubled high off the wall in center, bringing Altuve all the way around from first to score the go-ahead run. Corporan got himself hung up between second and third trying to stretch it into a triple, but happily, that didn't matter.

Man of the Match:

Jarred Cosart! With honorable mentions to Carter, Grossman, and Corporan.

Goat of the Game:

Philip Humber. Who wasn't AWFUL awful, but if the Astros had lost in extras after he allowed the tying run, it would have been on him.