Sunday, July 2, 2023

Sunday Morning Hot Links

The Astros just kind of stumbled along in a 5-2 loss to East Haltom City. Houston is 45-38, back to five games back. 

*The Rangers' 15 hits were a season high for the Astros' pitching staff. 11 of them were singles.

*Hunter Brown, the day before Shawn Dubin starts for the Astros, really could have helped everyone out with a strong performance. Instead: 4IP, 10H/3ER, 6K:0BB, needing 91 pitches to get through those four innings. 


I put some pitches in some good spots. Whether they fought them off or worked a hit out of it, they just made it difficult on me today. I don't think I was overly mis-executing. But it's kind of difficult to not think how you could have done better when they put up 10 hits on you.

Brown has faced three teams a second time in 2023:

Minnesota, April 9: 7IP, 2H/1R (0ER), 7K:2BB.

Minnesota, May 31: 4.2IP, 6H/5ER, 8K:2BB.

Oakland, May 20: 6IP, 5H/2R (1ER), 9K:0BB.

Oakland, May 26: 7IP, 4H/2ER, 10K:1BB.

Arlington, April 15: 7IP, 5H/2R (0ER), 5K:1BB

Arlington, July 1: 4IP, 10H/3ER, 6K:0BB

So let this be your confirmation that Oakland does, in fact, suck.

Brown's 56 strikes were a season low, as were the nine strikes looking, as were the eight line drives the Rangers hit.

*Rafael Montero: 1IP, 1H/1ER, 1K:1BB. Montero has now given up at least one run in 13 of his 35 appearances.

*Houston only had two plate appearances with a runner in scoring position. 

*6-9 in the lineup (Dubon, Julks, Meyers, Maldonado) went a combined 0x10, 3K:2BB.

*Jake Meyers was 0x3, 1K:0BB.

Jake Meyers, 2021: 163 PAs, .260/.323/.438, 6HR.

Jake Meyers, since: 387 PAs, .226/.295/.351, 7HR.

For no reason at all:

Chas McCormick, 2021: 320 PAs, .257/.319/.447, 14HR.

Chas McCormick, since: 578 PAs, .247/.333/.418, 21HR.

*Kyle Tucker hit his 12th home run of the season in the 9th to provide the Astros' only runs. Tucker has an eight-game hitting streak in which he's hitting .387/.457/.774. Six of his 12 hits in this span have been for extra-bases (three doubles, three homers). 

Tucker has two home runs in his last nine PAs. He had two homers in his previous 91 PAs. 

*Alex Bregman was 1x3 with a double and a walk. He has six walks in his last four games. Bregs is hitting .267/.421/.533 through this eight-game road trip.

*Framber Valdez will not make today's start due to a sprained ankle, which the Astros say (eyes roll completely out of head) happened against the Mets when he slipped down the dugout stairs. Framber sprained his ankle so badly that he made his next start a week later, losing the one game against the Cardinals (but not pitching terribly). Valdez:

I twisted it there and just continued pitching, maybe because of the heat or adrenaline there. But when I pitched in St. Louis, I felt it a little bit more, felt it a little more tender. And just figure better to skip a start than to regret it the rest of the season.

*Eno Sarris, on Cristian Javier's fastball decline.

*McTaggart: Altuve is staking his claim on the Astros' Mount Rushmore.

*Watch Yordan Alvarez and Michael Brantley run at you.

*The Astros are thriving as the underdogs in sports betting.

*Infielder Zach Dezenzo, 2023:

Asheville: .407/.474/.628

Corpus: .274/.371/.429 

*The Rangers classed up the joint by having a bunch of different mascots beat up a replica Orbit in their replica ballpark prior to the game. Which is pretty on-brand for a franchise whose generational highlight is punching Jose Bautista.

*How long will Canada burn?

*How to listen to, and enjoy, classical music.

*If you're having trouble using Twitter, but still want to follow Astros reporters/accounts, lists don't seem to be rate limited, so you can find my Astros Media list here.

*A Musical Selection: