Saturday, June 2, 2018

Saturday Morning Hot Links

The Astros never trailed against the Red Sox and cruised to a 7-3 victory. The Astros are 37-22 and improve to 18-11 at home. They've already won more games in June than they did in all of May. Houston is 8-1 in their last nine home games.

*George Springer was 3x4 with a walk and his 12th home run of the season. Correa hit his 10th home run of the season and Gattis hit his 8th home run of the season. So this was the 7th 3+ HR game of Houston's season. Hinch on Springer:
He's an energy provider for us.

*It was the 19th time the Astros scored at least seven runs. They're 16-3 in those games.

*Gerrit Cole: 7IP, 5H/3ER, 7K:2BB, 2HR. He has allowed a home run in four straight starts, but has allowed 3ER or less in all 12 of his starts this season. He had a similar streak in 13 starts from April 13-June 18, 2015. Hinch, on Cole:
He's really good at finishing his outing. I mean, 100 (mph) a couple of times in a row at the end of his game. When he knows he's about to be done and the game is close and he needs to dial it up, he's proven time and time again he can do it. He was very impressive.

Cole's 100.7mph pitch in the 7th was the fastest pitch he's thrown since May 16, 2015.

*Chris Devenski threw a scoreless 8th inning, dropping his ERA to 1.99.

*The Astros made Chris Sale throw 100 pitches in 6IP (6H/4ER, 6K:1BB). Sale's last two starts (Astros, Braves): 10.1IP, 11H/10ER, 14K:4BB. His 34 pitches in the 1st inning marked his first 30+ pitch inning of the season.

*The Astros were 3x8 w/RISP - both of Gurriel's hits came w/RISP.

*Correa and Gattis hit their home runs in the 8th off of Joe Kelly, who had not allowed a home run in his 25 outings before last night. Kelly's previous eight games: 7.2IP, 0H/0ER, 6K:2BB.

*On May 7 Evan Gattis was hitting .187/.260/.275. He had six extra-base hits: five doubles and a single home run. Since, however, he's hitting .316/.379/.737 with ten extra-base hits (three doubles and seven homers). Mike Foltynewicz threw a complete game, 2-hit shutout with 11Ks last night. So the trade is officially a draw.

*Jake Marisnick was 2x4 with 0 strikeouts, and has gone 7 PAs without a K.

*The Astros hit one million fans in their 29th home game. Baseball-Reference has Houston's attendance at 1,027,912. In 2013 their total attendance in 81 games was 1,651,883.

*Two good Jake Kaplan pieces for you to read:
a) A Q&A with Assistant GM Mike Elias on the upcoming draft 
b) A look at how the Astros overhauled their scouting department

One more from The Athletic: How two 23-year old first-year employees helped the Mariners pull off the Colome trade.

*So Josh Reddick's "mysterious leg infection" that was thought to be maybe a spider bite has actually turned out to be a staph infection. Hinch has already said Reddick won't play against the Red Sox, but Reddick:
If all this goes well, we can look at something next week. Hopefully with the two-game set coming in and some off days, we can work some stuff in to where I can come back and get a few breaks as well. It's not like we're just coming back and throwing me into the fire. 

*Alex Cora has brought Houston's playing style to Boston (see: Betts, Mookie hitting from the leadoff spot.) The Red Sox scare me more than the Yankees do.

*MinorLeagueBall has a really good look at what this Houston-Boston series actually means.

*Here are The Ringer's Two-Month Power Rankings. On the Astros at #2 (behind the Red Sox):
Marwin Gonzalez's struggles and a couple of noisy bullpen implosions feel like the Matrix correcting for an anomaly - if the Astros were really 42-15, we'd start to suspect our world was a simulation, so they needed to hit a couple of banana peels to dampen suspicion.

*Jon Heyman suggests the Astros trade David Paulino and J.D. Davis to the Royals for closer Kelvin Herrera and Jon Jay. The 28-year old Herrera has thrown 21.2IP, 16H/2ER, 18K:0BB for Kansas City this year. He has a 0.83 ERA, a 2.06 FIP, and a 3.33 xFIP.

*Derek Fisher hit for the cycle in a 5x5 night last night for Fresno. Grizzlies manager Rodney Linares:
Last night was the big test. He was scheduled to get five at-bats and in the ninth we were facing a lefty, and he said, 'I can hit lefties, you know.' And he saw some questionable pitches and ended up getting called out. But tonight, he ended up getting the cycle with a home run off a lefty and he hit the ball on the screws. He's strong as an ox.

*Oh hey whaddayaknow the Mariners won another 1-run game on a walkoff in extras. It's their 5th walkoff win of the season, and they're 17-9 in 1-run games (the Astros are 4-11). Seattle is 6-0 in extra inning games (the Astros are 1-4).


*Out of 488 MLB hitters, Rougned Odor ranks 484th with -1.2 fWAR (Pujols is 488th) since the beginning of the 2017 season, "hitting" .206/.253/.385 with a 59 wRC+.

*OU (Boomer) QB Kyler Murray will have an interesting summer.

*Leeds United (my favorite soccer team) fired manager and so-typically-British-named Paul Heckingbottom. Argentina's former manager Marco Bielsa has been linked to the job. A list of Leeds United managers since the beginning of the 2014 season with the number of games they lasted:

Dave Hockaday (6)
Neil Redfearn (4)
Darko Milanic (6)
Neil Redfeard (33)
Uwe Rosler (12)
Steve Evans (38)
Garry Monk (53)
Thomas Christiansen (33)
Paul Heckingbottom (13)

*Top-10 Band Alert: Centro-Matic. Will Johnson is a buddy of mine, but I loved Centro-Matic before that happened. Start off listening to the Candidate Waltz, and this song: