*At 26-14, the Astros have the franchise's best record after 40 games, and a 41.7% chance of winning the division, a 59.9% chance of making the postseason, and a 4.1% chance of winning the World Series
*George Springer brought a fog machine, strobe lights, and a dance remix into the clubhouse after last night's win:
It's 2015, and we're killing it, so we might as well have some fun. (Subscription may be required)
*Luke Gregerson has been away from the team twice in the last two weeks to deal with a "personal issue," and has been tagged up over the course of his last three games. After allowing two earned runs last night and getting pulled with two outs in the 9th for Pat Neshek, A.J. Hinch is giving Gregerson today (Wednesday) off. Hinch told the Chronicle (previous link):
Guys have real lives. I don't know whether's it's connected or not. He's not going to want to talk about it. It's very personal.
*Ken Rosenthal says the Astros have been scouting Jeff Samardzija on the off-chance he becomes available. He also notes that the Astros' minor-league tandem pitching - to some - devalues their pitching prospects, while others like it because it keeps their innings down.
*Buster Olney likes the idea of Houston native Scott Kazmir going to the Astros if the A's put him on the block.
*Lance McCullers will get another start Saturday in Detroit. McCullers and his Batman cleats prompted a column from Sports on Earth.
*Jason Castro changed his swing, and his walk rate is increasing, strikeout rate is decreasing, and he's throwing out almost 10% more baserunners than league-average.
*Sam Deduno had a precautionary MRI on his back.
*Fresno will offer a pizza with a hot dog-stuffed crust.
*An ear infection has led to former Astro Jarred Cosart headed to the DL with vertigo.