Saturday, July 25, 2020

Saturday Morning Hot Links

The Astros won their 8th straight Opening Day game with an 8-2 win over Seattle. Houston is 19-1 against Seattle since Opening Day 2019, and 42-16 against Seattle since the beginning of the 2017 season.

Also winning in the AL West: Arlington, Oakland.

Dusty Baker:
The guys had a lot of energy, a lot of belief and a lot of relief, getting back and playing a real game, because it didn't look like this was even going to happen.

Justin Verlander: 6IP, 3H/2ER, 7K:1BB. Both runs scored on solo home runs. 28 of the 36 home runs he allowed in 2019 were solo homers. Verlander:
They swung at the first pitch of the game and really didn't stop swinging from there. I needed to execute my pitches and the boys did the rest...You can come up with the best game plan in the world and you can abort it three pitches in, which is basically what I did. I was able to adjust quickly and have success.

It was Verlander's 74th regular season start as an Astro. He has allowed two or fewer earned runs in 52 of those starts.

Michael Brantley hit a three-run homer. It was his second straight Opening Day home run. Dusty, on Brantley:
There's no tension in him at all and it's effortless. It almost looks like he's in slow motion and the ball just jumps off his bat.

Zero Astros batters were hit by a pitch, much to the chagrin of incels across the world.

Chris Devenski struck out the side. Enoli Paredes and Blake Taylor made their MLB debuts and combined for 2IP, 1H/0ER, 0K:0BB.

*Yordan Alvarez, Jose Urquidy, and Cionel Perez are alive, and headed to Corpus! Dusty:
I know they'll probably say they're ready sooner than they are. No matter what they tell me, I'll still give them another couple of days. I know how players are anxious to get back. They missed a lot of time. It's going to take probably almost equal time they missed to get back. We'll be in constant contact with the people in Corpus and we're relying on their opinion of them and their progress.

It stands to reason that, if you're just looking for a DH, Yordan could come back more quickly than Urquidy and Perez. We don't know if they had COVID and had enough negative tests to be able to join, or there was some government clearance that was necessary. We just don't know anything because the Astros kept their mouths shut.

Also in that link: Bregman addresses how he can't afford a slow start again, and how today is the first MLB start for Lance McCullers since August 4, 2018.

Also Shawn Dubin and Ralph Garza have been cleared to return to baseball activities.

*Osuna might be available. Dusty:
I don't want them to know. You understand and this isn't football. You don't have to disclose stuff. As much as I hate to tell you guys that, it's the truth. 

*Clayton Kershaw was placed on the IL with a sketchy back.

Regular Season Kershaw: 169-74, 2.44 ERA / 1.01 WHIP, 2464K:577BB. 157 ERA+
Regular Season Verlander: 225-129, 3.33 ERA / 1.14 WHIP,  3006K:850BB. 129 ERA+

Postseason Kershaw: 9-11, 4.43 ERA / 1.11 WHIP, 170K:45BB.
Postseason Verlander: 14-11, 3.40 ERA / 1.07 WHIP, 205K:60BB

World Series Kershaw: 26.2IP, 23H/16ER, 27K:7BB, 5.40 ERA / 1.13 WHIP
World Series Verlander: 38IP, 35H/24ER, 39K:14BB, 5.68 ERA / 1.29 WHIP

Maybe back off of Kershaw.

*84 MLB players from 28 teams have tested positive for COVID.

*RIP Former Astros Scout Johan Maya.

*Yoenis Cespedes has hit a home run in three consecutive games spanning 803 days.

*The Toronto Pittsburgh Baltimore Blue Jays of Buffalo.

*Jason Heyward doesn't want to stick to sports.

*How to see Comet Neowise before it's gone.

*Heads-up, South Texas.

*A Musical Selection: