Saturday, September 23, 2023

Saturday Morning Hot Links

Yet again the Dumb Ass Houston Astros couldn't do what other teams have done 102 times this season: beat the Kansas City Royals. Houston is 85-69, 39-40 at "home." They're idiots, and I hate them at the moment. They've lost seven of their last ten games. There are a maximum of eight games remaining. Those nuns who fronted Alex Cora need to bring wheelbarrows full of sage.

I do not want the Astros to miss the playoffs out of spite. Dusty has done some incomprehensible things (Dubon batting leadoff, Abreu batting cleanup, scroll down for Maldonado Slander) but I still want him to succeed because that means this God-forsaken team (meaning 2023) succeeds. That said, should the Astros miss the playoffs they have absolutely nobody to blame but themselves. At some point we'll talk about Jim Crane's Jerry Jones Heel Turn last fall, but that's another talk for another time. 


It's very frustrating. The guys are a little frustrated, but we are still in a good position.

*AL Playoff Picture:

1. Baltimore (95-60)

2. Haltom City (85-68)

3. Minnesota (82-72)

4. Tampa (94-61)

5. Toronto (86-68)

6. Houston (85-69)

7. Seattle (84-69)

*AL West Odds, FanGraphs:

Houston: 40.1%

Haltom City: 36.4%

Seattle: 23.5%

*AL Postseason Odds, FanGraphs:

Toronto: 88.7%

Houston: 81.3%

Haltom City: 78.1%

Seattle: 51.9%

*The DAMF Astros have lost 11 of their last 15 home games against Boston, New York, San Diego, Oakland, Baltimore, and Kansas City. Only Baltimore is over .500 for the season.

*These morons have given up 25 runs on this homestand (1-3).

*The Trashstros were 2x13 with runners in scoring position against the Royals last night.

*Framber was a disaster, then he wasn't, then he was again. Framber: 5.1IP, 4H/7R (6ER), 10K:3BB. It was the 10th 10+ K start of his career. 

His 6ER allowed match the total number of earned runs he'd allowed in his last five starts combined. Framber also hit two batters - the first time since July 30, 2022 he'd done that. The Astros are 3-5 when Framber hits 2+ batters in a game.

*Bullpen: 4.2IP, 1H/0ER, 4K:1BB.

*Astros pitchers held Kansas City to five hits. Five. The Astros are now 25-10 when allowing five or fewer hits. They've scored 3 or fewer runs in 12 of those 35 games. 

*3-5 in the lineup (Yordan, Bregman, Tucker): 2x12, 2K:3BB. 0x4 w/RISP.

*Yordan, who tweaked something in his elbow last week and hasn't played in the field since:

No, I don't think anybody's feeling pressure. We understand that this is going to go down to the last game of the season. And talking to some of the guys, tomorrow we're going to have to flip that switch and activate playoff mode.

Not a fan of waiting until Game 154, when you just lost the division lead because you can't beat the worst teams in baseball, to "activate playoff mode."

*Martin Maldonado: 0x3, 2K:0BB, passed ball. It was his league-leading 12th passed ball of the season, his 21 passed balls since the beginning of the 2022 season lead the league, as well! 

Martin Maldonado offensive ranks, MLB, min. 350 PAs (232 players):

BA: .189 (231st) - he's tied with Giancarlo Stanton, which kind of blew my mind.

OBP: .258 (230th)

SLG: .343 (221st)

wRC+: 65 (227th)

K%: 34.3% (229th)

fWAR: -1.3 (230th)

So he's one of the worst hitters in the league, but also has the most passed balls in the last two seasons. Tell me exactly why he's playing five days a week?

*The Astros are 14-15 against the AL Central this year, which is almost impossible to fathom, as only one other AL East/AL West team is under .500 against the garbage-ass AL Central (Oakland). Houston vs...

Minnesota: 2-4

Kansas City: 1-3

Chicago: 4-3

Detroit: 3-3

Cleveland: 4-2

*Houston is 2-5 against the only 100-loss teams in MLB in September. They have no one to blame but themselves. And here's the most inane thing about these seven games:

Scoring 5 or fewer runs vs Oakland/Kansas City: 0-4

Scoring 6 or more runs vs Oakland/Kansas City: 2-1


Obviously, it's frustrating losing to teams that you say, 'Come on, we're the Astros, we shouldn't be losing to them. But that's baseball. It's part of the game. It happens....Just because...they've won a couple games against us, doesn't mean that we're going to stop being the Houston Astros. We're still the Houston Astros, we're still the champs, and we're going to continue battling.

*Kyle Tucker hit a triple. Tucker, September: .209/.299/.463.

Kyle Tucker's first 537 Major-League games: 11 triples.

Kyle Tucker's last ten games: four triples.

*Michael Brantley was out with shoulder soreness for the 4th straight game. 

*Ryne Stanek is back, and Joel "The Human White Flag" Kuhnel is back in Sugar Land.

*Going to the Arizona Fall League are Zach Dezenzo, Kenedy Corona, Miguel Palma, AJ Blubaugh (lol), Ray Gaither, Tyler Guilfoil, Jaime Melendez, Miguel Ullola 

*Dallas Keuchel is going to the playoffs for the seventh time in his career. 

*Philadelphia's Orion Kerkering has played in Low-A, High-A, Double-A, Triple-A, and now the Majors...all in 2023.

*NL Playoff Picture:

1. Atlanta (99-55)

2. Los Angeles (94-59)

3. Milwaukee (88-66)

4. Philadelphia (85-69)

5. Arizona (81-63)

6. Chicago (80-74)

7. Miami (79-75): -1.0

8. Cincinnati (79-76): -1.5

9. San Francisco (77-77): -3.0

10. San Diego (76-78): -4.0

*Willie's 151st album takes on bluegrass.

*What To Watch, September 23:

Florida State @ Clemson: 11am Central

Awbren @ Texas A and Them: 11am

Celta Vigo @ Barcelona: 11:30am

UCLA @ Utah: 2:30pm

Colorado @ Oregon: 2:30pm

Ole Miss @ Alabama: 2:30pm

Blue Jays at Rays, 3:10pm

Mariners @ Rangers, 6:05pm

Royals @ Astros, 6:10pm

Texas @ Baylor: 6:30pm

Ohio State @ Notre Dame: 6:30pm

*A Musical Selection: