Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Tuesday Morning Hot Links

The Astros were off yesterday, the last day off before a possible postseason return trip. Houston is coming off a 2-9 road trip in which they got out-scored 65-39 - including four one-run losses - that lost them 4.5 games on Oakland and pretty much knocked them out of the running for a 4th straight division championship. 

Oakland and Seattle played a double-header yesterday, and honestly it would be great if they could both lose. That said, the Fightin' Dipotos split the double-header with Oakland. The Astros are the only team in MLB below .500 with a positive run differential (+5). Here's the AL West, as of Tuesday morning:

Oakland: 30-18

Houston: 23-24 (-6.5)

Seattle: 22-26 (-8.0)

For the Astros to win the AL West, they would need to win out and have Oakland go 5-7.

FanGraphs' Postseason Odds:

Houston to win the AL West: 0.6%; Houston to make the postseason: 94.3%.

FiveThirtyEight's Postseason Odds:

Houston to win the AL West: < 1%; Houston to make the postseason: 94%.

Baseball-Reference's Postseason Odds:

Houston to win the AL West: 0.4%; Houston to make the postseason: 95%.

Houston's remaining opponents' win percentage: .390

Oakland's remaining opponents' win percentage: .527

Seattle's remaining opponents' win percentage: .564

*MLB.com says that the Astros one goal for these last 13 games is to just get healthy. To that end, Justin Verlander could return for the last week of the season in a tune-up start for the postseason, and Lance McCullers is scheduled to start Wednesday against Arlington.

*Cristian Javier is getting some Rookie of the Year love.

*Chandler Rome: What happens to foul balls in an empty Minute Maid Park? If you're a season-ticket holder, you might start checking your mailbox.

*Jake Kaplan: Three big questions facing the Astros' pitching staff (and you can find an offer to subscribe to The Athletic for $1/month. I know I used to write for The Athletic, and they dropped me like 3rd Period French, but it's a really good deal.)

*If you love seeing Steve Sparks lose his ever-loving sht and Josh Reddick in a speedo, you're probably going to be very disappointed.

*If you're interested in knowing what Dave F. Roberts thinks about the Astros, you can listen to his interview with Jon Heyman and Tony Gwynn, Jr.

*You would be better off listening to me and Pat talk to ESPN's Jeff Passan for 42 minutes.

*The New York Post's Joel Sherman says that the postseason would be better if it didn't include the Astros and featured a Dodgers/Yankees World Series. Joel Sherman has unlocked the Legendary New Yorker level of journalism.

*SI's Tom Verducci busted up seven MLB myths you thought were true.

*Leeds United is currently at 31% to get relegated from the Premier League and, if you watched that Liverpool match on Saturday, you can join me in giving the most exaggerated of wanking motions towards Nate Silver.

*For the second known time in history, there are five tropical cyclones in the Atlantic at the same time.

*"The Burning Forest Lit The Way"

*South Dakota's Attorney General reported that he hit a deer on Saturday night. A body - a human body - was discovered Sunday morning.

*A minor miscalculation cost Intel $500m. A minor miscalculation, by me, means I still have $17,000 of student loan debt 18 years after graduating from college and 14 years after graduating from grad school. So who's the real victim here.

*I have a lot of bad habits, and I'm trying to rectify all of those. This song helps, A Musical Selection: