Wednesday, July 30, 2014

From the Office of the County Clerk - G108: Astros v. Athletics

Jason Hammel (0-3, 7.11) vs Dallas Keuchel (9-7, 3.11)

Glass half empty: The Astros were one out away from sweeping the top team in MLB. Glass half full: The Astros were one out away from sweeping the top team in MLB. Either way you cut it, Houston beat Oakland for 26.2 innings this week, and they nailed down a series win today in straight up dominant fashion. No mopey hangover from the A's 6-run 9th last night, as the Astros jumped on ex-Cub Jason Hammel for 6 runs of their own before he could record 3 outs. That, and no bullpen necessary this afternoon, as Dallas Keuchel was at his groundball best, allowing only 4 hits in his fourth complete game of the year. Astros win 8-1, and go into July's final day at 44-64 overall.

On the Mound:

*All Keuchel, all day long. After posting a 6.07 ERA in 5 starts June 17-July 19, the Kid with the Beard looked to regain his All-Star-esque form last Friday against Miami (7 IP, 2 R, 0 BB). Today, he was every bit as good as he's been all year long. Behold: 9 IP / 4 H / 1 R / 1 ER / 3 BB / 5 K. 111 pitches, 70 for strikes, and 12:4 GB:FB outs.

At the Plate:

*Most of the offense came in the 1st inning, but that was more than plenty with the way Kid Keuchy pitched today. Plus it was great to wash away the bad memories of last night's 9th immediately. Every Astro had at least one hit, and every Astro had exactly one hit, except for Marc Krauss, who went 0x4.

*But Krauss still contributed a RBI and a run scored after reaching on a fielder's choice.

*Going down the line: Jose Altuve matched a season high by extending his hitting streak to 12 games, going 1x4 with a BB and a K. Interestingly, he was the only Astro NOT to reach base in the 1st, and made two of the three outs that inning.

*Kiké Hernandez was 1x5 with a run scored.

*Jason Castro went 1x3 with a R, a BB, and 2 K.

*Krauss K'd once, and the rest we covered above.

*Jonathan Singleton contributed the non-1st-inning runs, going 1x3 with a 2-run HR into the Crawford Boxes in the 5th - his 8th home run of the year. He also walked and scored in the 1st, and K'd one time.

*Matt Dominguez was 1x4 with a R and a RBI.

*Carlos Corporan tried everything once more, finishing 1x3 with a R, a RBI, a BB, and a K.

*Mike-Bob Grossman had the other big blow, going deep to RF for a 2-run HR in the 1st, for his 4th homer of the season. He finished 1x2 with 2 BB.

*And Gregorio Petit went 1x4 with 2 K.

Turning Point:

Keuchel set the A's down in order in the top of the 1st, and Jose Altuve flied out to center leading off the bottom half, but then began the fun: Kiké single, Castro single, Krauss FC (RBI), Singleton BB, Matty D single (RBI, plus an error on the play let in another run), Corp single (RBI), Grossman HR (2 RBI), Petit single. Then Altuve K'd to end the inning, but not before it was 6-0 Houston.

Man of the Match:


Goat of the Game:

The Astros split six games against Oakland, but were swept by the Marlins in between. Whatever. No goat!