Sunday, September 15, 2013

From the Office of the County Clerk - G149: Astros v. Angels

Jerome Williams (7-10, 4.81) vs Paul Clemens (4-4, 5.91)

This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.
--T.S. Eliot, "The Hollow Men"

And so goes the Astros' last, best chance to win another series before the 2013 season is out. Angels take the game and the series 2-1 today, and Houston drops to 51-98 before a stretch of 13 straight against playoff contenders to close out this forgettable year.

On the Mound:

*No blame should be laid at the feet of Paul Clemens for the Astros' loss today. Of his three big league starts now, two have been gems, as his 7 IP / 6 H / 2 R / 2 ER / 1 BB / 2 K line this afternoon will attest.

*Kevin Chapman allowed only a walk in 1.1 innings of scoreless work.

*Chia-Jen Lo retired both of the batters he faced for the final two outs of the 9th.

At the Plate:

*Marc Krauss deserves no blame for the Astros' loss either, as his solo HR in the 2nd (#4) was the only thing standing between the offense and another shutout. Krauss finished 1 for 4.

*Brandon Barnes was the only Astro with a multi-hit day, going 2 for 3 from the #9 spot.

*Jose Altuve has hit safely in 13 of his last 15 games now, going 1 for 3 with a sac bunt today.

*Jonathan Villar (1 for 3, BB), Trevor Crowe (1 for 4), and Matt Dominguez (1 for 3, HBP) had the other hits.

Turning Point:

With the score tied 1-1 going into the 5th, Erick Aybar and Hank Conger led off with back-to-back singles. An Andrew Romine sac fly scored Aybar from third to give Los Angeles the decisive 2-1 margin. Later on, in the 8th, the Astros got runners on second and third with one out, but Trevor Crowe and Brett Wallace both struck out to kill Houston's chances.

Man of the Match:

Paul Clemens. Tough loss, but at least this is still better than watching Lucas Harrell blow it up again.

Goat of the Game:

Every Astro not named Krauss who touched a bat today.


Mike Castleman Jr. said...

I think your goat of the game comment today was a bit harsh and suffered from a bit of getthisseasonoverasfastaspossibleitis...

Terence said...

The goat of this game is Porter. He has the tying and go ahead runners on first and second, no outs, and makes Altuve bunt (who is .500 for September), so the game can be in the hands of Crowe and Wallace, who promptly fail to put a ball in play. I would say this is unbelievable, but it's not. Porter loves the bunt more than any NL manager and it is obscene and moronic.

Blinutne said...

Altuve is also prone to hitting into double plays, though. Yeah, he's been hitting very well lately, but I don't think it was as stupid a decision as you're making it out to be.

Terence said...

There are good reasons to bunt. Being afraid of making a double play is not one of them. Maybe I wasn't clear but I don't think Altuve should be swinging away because he is hot. I think he should be swinging away because he was the best hitter in the Astros lineup last night. As compared to Altuve,Crowe and Wallace are both significantly more likely to strike out, pop up, make an out, or not advance the runners.
In this situation you need a hit to tie/win the game and Altuve gives you the best chance to get that hit and win the game.

If we don't trust Altuve to hit with runners on base, he should not be hitting second or third in the line up. (And if we don't trust Crowe and Wallace to drive in runners from first and second, then they shouldn't be hitting #3 and clean-up).