Sunday, August 26, 2018

Sunday Morning Hot Links

*The Astros continued to roll in Anaheim with an 8-3 win. The Twins remain useless, losing to Oakland 6-2. Houston is 79-50 with a 1.5-game lead on 33 regular season games to play. Houston has won five of their last six games.

*Astros, after 129 games, 2018: 79-50
Astros, after 129 games, 2017: 78-51

*Houston has scored 8+ runs in three straight games for the first time since April 19-21.

*There were some HBPs handed out: two by the Angels (Altuve and Gurriel) and one by the Astros (Ohtani). A grown man who goes by "Deck" was ejected, along with Scioscia. Deck McGuire:
I was just trying to go in...to a guy who likes to dive over the plate and I missed down the middle, and I'm just trying to make sure it didn't happen again. It's unfortunate in that situation that warnings had been issued because there was no intent on my part. 

It's the second time Altuve has been hit on the elbow this week. Hinch:
It's always tough when a guy gets hit like that. You go out there and immediate see seams on his arm. He's going to be sore. I don't know if he's going to play tomorrow or not. We left him in there, he had another at-bat, took another good swing, but he'll be stiff tonight. 

*Josh Reddick was 3x5, his 6th 3-hit game of the year.

*Jose Altuve recorded his 3rd-straight multi-hit game. At 140 hits, he'll need 60 in his last 33 games to record his 5th-straight 200-hit season.

*Alex Bregman hit his 39th and 40th double of the season leading the league, and also drawing a walk. He has 68 strikeouts and 74 walks in 2018. It's been 34 plate appearances since Alex Bregman last struck out. Bregman has a 44-game road on-base streak, longest in MLB.

*Marwin was 2x4 with a home run and a walk. Since July 31, Marwin is hitting .329/.396/.683. Altuve, on Marwin:
Marwin is a great player. He did it last year. He's been doing it a long time. Sometimes, people get surprised by what he does. Not me, because I've seen him play this good.

*Yuli Gurriel had two doubles and no GIDPs! Gurriel is 3rd on a list of Miguel Rojas and Yangervis Solarte as the only MLB players with 20 GIDPs (Rojas and Solarte have 21).

*Carlos Correa was 0x5 with a GIDP. Since returning from the DL, Correa is hitting .167/.236/.250 with a .189 BABIP.

*Justin Verlander threw 6IP, 6H/3ER, 6K:2BB to improve to 13-8, tied for the team lead in wins with Charlie Morton.

Astros pitchers with double-digit wins: 5
Other 29 teams with 10+ win pitchers: 35

Verlander has thrown a Quality Start in 19 of his 28 starts. Houston is 16-12 when Verlander starts. He had allowed two or fewer runs in eight of those 12 losses. Verlander:
Those guys backed me up today. Today was a battle for me physically. Didn't feel great for whatever reason. One of those games you take pride in battling, knowing I didn't have anywhere near my best stuff. 

*The Angels used eight different pitchers.

*George Springer missed his 5th straight game but hasn't gone on the DL because he plays well against Oakland. Hinch "hopes" Springer will return to the lineup on Monday to open a home series against the A's.

Springer vs. Oakland, 2018: 69 PAs, .365/.420/.540

*Framber Valdez will make his first career start today. Check this story in the Chron on his cool demeanor. Jake Kaplan has the story behind Valdez.

*Kyle Tucker is on fire right now. Literally. Someone help him. Tucker hit a 3-run walk-off last night to clinch the PCL Northern Division for Fresno. Tucker has six home runs in his last four games and has homered in seven of his last eight games in Triple-A.

*That $1 million charge on Verlander's breakfast ticket? The whole thing was comped.

*SI's Emma Baccellieri: How Oakland transformed from mediocre to a threat.

*Check this 1973 1st person account of John McCain's five years as a POW.

*Drew Magary: The fast food worth making at home.

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