Well that was fun. The Astros beat the North Mansfield Rangers 12-4. Houston is 29-28, and are three games up with three games to play. An Astros win or an Angels loss will clinch Houston's 4th straight playoff appearance. The Mariners were officially eliminated from playoff contention for the 19th year in a row.
*The Astros offense finally looked like the Astros offense. They scored 12 runs on 15 hits - double-digit runs for the first time since August 24 and double-digit hits for the first time since September 12.
*Houston hit four home runs in a game for the 3rd time this season, after hitting four home runs total in their previous five games. Somehow the Astros are now 2-3 when hitting 3+ homers. They were 35-7 when hitting 3+ homers in 2019. It was the first time that Springer, Altuve, and Bregman homered in the same game since June 20, 2018. Dusty:
It was big to break out like that and keep scoring. We usually have the big first inning, but we kept scoring.
*Bregman was (wink) a single away from the cycle. Springer, Altuve, and Reddick all had three hits each. It was Bregman's sixth career game with 3+ extra-base hits. Bregman:
I think that's what we should be doing. We're a very good offense. It's repeating. We've had a few games this year I thought we swung the bat well, but we didn't really repeat it, so now it's time to repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat, and keep doing that.
*Jose Altuve was (wink) a triple away from the cycle, and got his first home run since August 6, a span of 32 games in between home runs, matching his 32-game streak without a homer from May 16-June 26, 2015. Longest span of games between homers, by season:
Springer, on Altuve:
It's a long time coming. I think his swing actually looks great. He's hit the ball hard a lot but doesn't have a lot to show for it. He's our guy. He's our leader. He's been extremely positive and upbeat all year. To see him have this night...it was awesome.
*And still somehow the Astros were 2x8 with runners in scoring position.
*The Kennedale Rangers' SP Lance Lynn was roughed up: 5.2IP, 12H/10R (9ER), 5K:2BB, 3 HR allowed. Lynn had never allowed 12H/10R before. Lynn has only given up 3+ home runs seven times in his career - three of them have come against the Astros.
*Cristian Javier: 5.2IP, 5H/3ER, 6K:1BB. He gave up a 2-run homer to
Kole Willie Calhoun.
*MLB Standings Insanity! Heading into the final weekend of the regular season, the Astros are currently slated to face the A's. There are six NL teams within one game of the final four playoff spots. In the AL Central Minnesota, Chicago, and Cleveland are within two games of each other.
*The A's are a popular pick to get bounced in the first round for SI staff.
*Yahoo's Zach Crizer: Why can't the Angels make the playoffs with Mike Trout?
*Alex Gordon retired after 14 seasons with the Royals.
*Smithsonian: Did the Northern Lights play a role in the sinking of the Titanic? Yeah I didn't see the Northern Lights shimmering when Jack froze to death while Rose had at least an extra 14 square feet of space on that Big Ass Raft so I'm calling BS.
*REALLY interested in Utopia, which premieres on Amazon today.
*Three NYC MTA employees got busted for building a Man Cave beneath Platform 3 at Grand Central Station. I think it's genius, also, Grand Central Station is my literal favorite place on earth.
*An Extremely-Friday Musical Selection: