Saturday, September 5, 2020

Saturday Morning Hot Links

 Well that was very stupid. Lance McCullers didn't record an out, the Astros rallied late, but fell even later in extra innings where the bullpen had to record all the outs prior to a double-header today. Houston is 21-16, 5-10 on the road. Houston is 2-6 in extra-inning games.

*The Astros were 3x24 with runners in scoring position. Reddick, Maldonado, and Toro each had three ABs with RISP, and all three came up empty. After scoring three runs in the top of the 9th to tie it, they were 0x6 w/RISP in the 10th and 11th Innings. Dusty:

We did fight back in the ninth, but a lot of times you lose the game before the ninth. It was very frustrating tonight to see opportunities squandered.

*Abraham Toro was 0x4 with two strikeouts. In 24 games in 2020, Toro is "hitting" .149/.230/.299. His 47 wRC+ ranks 284th out of 308 MLB players with at least 60 PAs. 

*Michael Brantley had his 10th multi-hit game of the season. 

*Lance McCullers failed to record an out for the first time in his career, walking three and allowing two hits to the first five batters he faced. Five of his 18 pitches were strikes. McCullers:

Just dealing with a weird period right now, kind of started a few days ago. But I'll be fine. My stuff wasn't there...Dusty didn't want me to have to battle through that in this period and kind of save it for another day.

McCullers: 0.0IP, 2H/3ER, 0K:3BB

Bullpen: 10.1IP, 5H/3R (2ER), 10K:8BB

McCullers told Chandler Rome:

I had TJ and also had some cleanout in the back. They basically split your triceps and go in there and shave bone and take out old scar tissue. I'm just dealing with a little bit of discomfort and just an awkward feeling back there.

Every part of my reproductive organs retreated to the safety of the inside of my body just reading that. 

*Luis Garcia - who had not pitched above Fayetteville - made his MLB debut in relief and threw 4.1IP, 1H/1ER, 2K:3BB. Dusty, on Garcia:

He saved us. Had he gone out there and spit the bit, I would have really been upside down for [Saturday]. The whole bullpen did an outstanding job. The kid saved us.

*Jose Altuve is likely out for the weekend with a knee sprain, and an IL stint hasn't been determined yet.

*Game 4 Hero Jose Urquidy said he was quarantined with COVID-19 symptoms for 35-40 days in Houston.

*Let's get weird! Brandon Bielak will start Game 1 today, Game 4 Hero Jose Urquidy will start Game 2. With Peacock close to returning, this may be Bielak's last chance to impress and stay on the team.

*Bregman is close. Bregman:

I'm ready and I'm excited. Hopefully, that's soon. I'm just working out with the trainers and strength coaches, and they've done an amazing job helping me out. And I'm looking forward to it, looking forward to getting back to doing what I love and competing and playing the game.

Bregman hasn't played since leaving the game on August 19. After an 0x5 on July 29, Bregman was hitting .174/.321/.348. From July 31-Aug 19 he hit .304/.392/.551. The Astros are 7-5 since he's been on the IL. 

*Austin Pruitt - who was acquired from the Rays a matter of days before Luhnow was terminated, leading to the Rays' James Click (Jiminy Clicket) taking over the reins - had surgery to repair a hairline fracture in his right elbow, and will be out until early 2021. We also find that Joe Biagini was optioned to the alternate training site, with Chris Devenski activated.

Biagini, with Toronto: 309.1IP, 340H/163ER, 276K:115BB, 4.74 ERA/1.43 WHIP, 4.28 FIP

Biagini, with Houston: 19IP, 31H/22ER, 14K:13BB, 10.42 ERA/2.32 WHIP, 8.56 FIP

Biagini, 2020: 4.1IP, 10H/10ER, 4K:4BB, 20.77 ERA /3.23 WHIP.

Biagini has made 17 appearances for the Astros. He has allowed a baserunner in 15 of them, and didn't allow a hit in just four. His 10.42 ERA is the 4th-worst in Astros history among relievers with at least 10IP thrown, behind Felipe Paulino, Stephen Randolph, and Casey Daigle.

*Just a bloodbath of Former Astros Greats as Domingo Santana was outrighted and Jake Elmore was released.

*Roger Clemens talked to SI about what he learned from Tom Seaver. Tom Seaver and the enduring hope of the 1969 Mets.

*It is one week until Leeds United opens the Premier League season at Liverpool. I'm already shaking.

*Psyche: How to be indistractable.

*Wired: How to solve a Rubik's Cube in five seconds or less

*Black Troops were welcome in Britain, but Jim Crow wasn't: The Race Riot of One Night in 1943.

*A Musical Selection: