Saturday, June 14, 2014

From the Office of the County Clerk - G69: Astros v. Rays

Alex Cobb (1-4, 4.39) vs Collin McHugh (4-3, 2.82)

Alex Cobb has a funky delivery. That delivery has not worked well for him lately - 9.39 ERA in his last three starts - and his team came into Houston last in the majors and losers of 14 out of their last 16. But Alex Cobb's funky delivery was a mystery the Astros bats could not solve, while Collin McHugh tonight seemed like little mystery at all. So the Rays take the opener of this three game set 6-1, and the Astros dropped back to 31-38 overall.

On the Mound:

*Doctor McHugh was not awful tonight, and a 2nd-inning error by Jonathan Villar did not help him out either. But for the second straight start, McHugh was not at his best, and for the third straight start, he didn't make it past the 5th inning. Tampa Bay put up 2-spots in the 2nd and 5th against him, and he finished with a 5 IP / 5 H / 4 R / 3 ER / 3 BB / 6 K line.

*Josh Zeid was just recalled (in place of Rudy Owens), and was soon pressed into action following the 5th. But only a walk and a single reached against him in two scoreless innings tonight.

*Darin Downs surrendered a leadoff single in the 8th, but a double play quickly erased that runner and Downs faced the minimum for his one frame.

*pr0FF3ss0r_F4rnsw0rth was handed the 9th trailing 4-1, but fortunately for him, that was more than the Astro bats could handle tonight anyway. So it hardly mattered when he allowed four straight one-out singles, plating two more Tampa Bay runs, before finally escaping on another double play.

At the Plate:

*It was Jon Homerton and not much else against Alex Cobb tonight. For the second straight game, Jonathan went deep, sending Cobb's first pitch of the 4th into the Crawford Boxes. Unfortunately he struck out his other three times up, finishing 1x4 with 3 K.

*Jason Castro doubled to go 1x4 with a K.

*Chris Carter singled to go 1x4 with a K.

*And Matt Dominguez singled and walked, finishing 1x3 with a K.

*Robbie Grossman (0x2, 2 BB, K) and Marwin Gonzalez (0x3, BB, K) were Houston's only other baserunners.

Turning Point:

Singleton's home run cut Tampa Bay's 2-run lead in half in the 4th, but they got it back with insurance half an inning later. Desmond Jennings led off the inning against Collin McHugh with a double, which McHugh followed with a strikeout and a flyout to nearly escape the threat. But a walk to James Loney put two on for Ben Zobrist, who was hot (3x4) tonight. This time up, Zobrist stroked a triple to center that put the game away for the Rays with a 4-1 lead.

Man of the Match:

Jonathan Singleton, without whom Houston would not have scratched tonight.

Goat of the Game:

George Springer, earning his third Golden Sombrero tonight, going 0x4 with 4 K to boost Alex Cobb's 11 K effort.