Monday, June 5, 2023

Monday Morning Hot Links

The Astros dropped the final game of the series against Anaheim, 2-1, after J.P. France did a damn thing. Houston has dishonored J.P. France and heaped ashes upon his head. Houston is 35-24, and just 18-14 at Minute Maid Park. 

*The Astros are now 13-6 against the AL West: 2-4 vs Arlington and Seattle; 11-2 against Anaheim and Oakland.

*J.P. France turned in the best start of his career: 7IP, 3H/1ER, 3K:1BB. And it was all for naught. Houston has lost each of France's last three starts, scoring one run combined in two of those. Despite six starts with a 3.44 ERA, Houston is 2-4 in France's starts. 

Nathan Han: France overcomes first-inning jitters to go hitless through five.

*Having given up two earned runs in 23 appearances to start the season, Phil Maton has now given up an earned run in consecutive outings. The Angels got him for 5H/3R (2ER), with 1K:1BB in two games this series. 

*Yainer Diaz was 2x4 with a double and a solo home run - the lone Astros run of the game. Diaz has appeared in three of the Astros' last five games and has gone 4x9 with a double and two homers.

*Alex Bregman went 2x4 and is hitting .425/.500/.625 over the course of this 11-game hitting streak. I know I keep coming back to this, but Bregman bottomed out on May 7 with a slash line of .195/.322/.320. Since then he's hitting .337/.407/.516 with eight extra-base hits, 10K:11BB.

*Jake Meyers was 0x3 and has four hits in his last 30 Plate Appearances.

*Despite going 0x4 yesterday, Jeremy Pena has raised his OPS by 51 points since May 24. 

*Jose Altuve was out for the second straight game, dealing with an oblique issue. He ran and threw before Sunday's game but did not hit, and his status for the Toronto series is uncertain. Related: the Astros are calling up 2019 2nd Round pick Grae Kessinger from Sugar Land. He's hitting .284/.400/.443 for the Space Cowboys this season.

*Should he ever come back from the IL, the Astros are planning on using Forrest Whitley out of the bullpen.

*We're 4-5 days away from getting an update on El Fantasmo, Lance McCullers Jr. Dana Brown is hoping to get Jose Urquidy back around the All-Star Break.

*Roger Craig, the man who taught Mike Scott how to throw a split-finger fastball, passed away on Sunday.

*The Last 30 Games, Top 5:

1. West Forney: 21-9

2. Bronx: 20-10

3. Houston: 19-11

4. Arizona: 19-11

5. Los Angeles: 18-12

Houston had the 3rd-best record in baseball over the last month and lost two games in the standings. That's wild. 

*Zava Zlatan retired yesterday. Watch these Zava Zlatan goals.

*What Bruce Springsteen learned from Flannery O'Connor.

*Tomorrow I'll tell you about my little trip to College Station this weekend. 

*A Musical Selection: