Well well, Astros County is back off the 7-Day Disabled List (seriously, apologies - on behalf of all of us - for the lack of posting over the last couple of weeks). The Astros beat the A's (finally), the Mariners beat the Rangers, and the Angels beat the Dodgers last night. According to FanGraphs, the Astros have a 75.8% chance of winning the division, a 93.1% chance of making the postseason, and an 11.0% chance of winning the World Series. The Astros have a two-game lead on the Rangers with 22 games to play. The Rangers have 24 games to play.
Houston, Oakland, and Anaheim are off today, the Rangers and Mariners finish their series with 2:40pm Central game.
*With Marwin's homer last night he became the 11th Astro to hit 10+ home runs - tying an ML record set by the 2004 Detroit Tigers. The Astros have hit 192 home runs this season, tied with the Blue Jays for most in the Majors.
*Within that link we find that Scott Feldman returned to Houston last night, a week after leaving his start early with shoulder irritation. Tony Sipp and Jason Castro threw/caught a bullpen while workers at Minute Maid set up for the rescheduled Taylor Swift concert.
*With a massive four-game series starting in Arlington next Monday, the Rangers are considering tweaking their rotation to allow Hamels to start against the Astros, which would allow him to start in both of the remaining series against Houston.
*And while we're talking about Arlington, here comes Evan Grant oozing blue and red down his leg - the Print Hawk Harrelson - talking about how the not-brawl back in July reignited the Rangers.
*Max Stassi loved his return to Oakland, and was apparently snubbed by a few A's players.
*Here is a great article about how the Texas Baseball Ranch in Montgomery has been reinventing pitching. Guest appearances in the article include Scott Kazmir and Brent Strom.
*Jeff Passan's All-Minor League Team includes A.J. Reed as the Player of the Year:
Scouts marvel at his ability to hit breaking pitches, something the Astros have long adored about Reed, and the prospect of adding him to a lineup with Carlos Correa, Jose Altuve and George Springer for the next half-decade rightfully frightens the rest of the American League.
Honorable Mention honors go to Tyler White, Tony Kemp, J.D. Davis, Derek Fisher, Joe Musgrove, Jacob Nottingham (RIP), Brett Phillips (RIP), and Domingo Santana (RIP).