Where To Begin?

There was far more bad than good in today’s game.  The Astros and Nationals played one of the sloppiest professional baseball games in recent memory.  Houston batted around in the fifth, followed by Washington batting around in the sixth.  In that sixth inning, the Nationals scored 6 times on just two hits.

The Astros managed three hits and an error in the top of the 11th, but couldn’t muster a single run.

Astros pitchers walked in three runs and hit a batsman with the bases-loaded; Miguel Tejada had a costly bases-loaded error to keep the inning alive.  The overworked bullpen were asked to throw another 5.1 innings by four pitchers, including 3.0 IP by Geoff Geary, before the rain suspended play with the score tied 11-11 in the bottom of the 11th with one runner on and one out.

Starter Roy Oswalt looked good out of the gate, and was no doubt happy when he finally received some run support for a change, but had to leave after 5.0 IP with a bone bruise on his finger. 

I’m not exactly clear on whether or not Jason Smith is actually a member of this team.  Yes, he has started his Astros career 0-for-21, but if he’s going to take up a roster spot, it seems prudent to actually play him on occasion.  Only three times has he had more than a single plate appearance in a game, and he has not actually played in the field since April 19th.  In his last seven appearances, he was used exclusivly as a pinch-runner in three of them.

Meanwhile, Miguel Tejada continues to get none of the rest that Cecil Cooper talked about all offseason.

Now, to be fair, Jason Michaels has the same number of PAs as Smith, and has been in even fewer games, but there wasn’t a whole tirade about how Carlos Lee, Hunter Pence, or Michael Bourn were going to need a bunch of days off this season.

How bumpy were these 11 innings?  Take a look at the Win Probability Index from FanGraphs and see for yourself.   Keep your eyes on the horizon:

Win Probability Astros Nats 05-05.JPGIn fact, it’s remarkably difficult to come up with good news, even considering the Astros’ 14 hits, 10 runs, and ability to continually claw their way back into this game.  Jeff Keppinger continues to rake against lefties.  Tejada’s still swinging a hot bat. 

But perhaps the best news of the day was this shot, of a certain fan who shall remain nameless:



  1. astrosfaninexile

    WOW – YOU GOT ME! And hey – I don’t WANT to be nameless! 🙂 What inning was it – I don’t want to have to relive the whole damn game – or rather, the part of it that has already been played. The rest (and best, I hope) is yet to come, when the Astros win in the 12th inning. I have a LOT to say about this game. And given what good seats I had, a lot of nice pictures. Way too many of them are of mound conversations, though…

  2. Paige Landsem

    I really hope Oswalt is okay; he’s just one of a number of good players to go down recently. And as for Cecil Cooper…seems like a lot of fans are frustrated with him. He doesn’t seem to be helping much!

  3. stonebutch99

    RR-great job getting that picture of Susan captured on to your blog. We have a star in our midst. 😉

    Depressing series at Washington. I don’t think anyone thought we would get swept there. Everyone was feeling confident about today’s game, I know I was, even Aly (the skeptic) said she felt good about our chances today. 😉
    It’s Roy Oswalt against the Nats for goodness sake! WTF?

    Twitter: AGAME_

  4. stonebutch99

    ERROR: We did NOT get swept, and I apologize for that. To be honest, I didn’t see the end of the game. It was cut off during the 9th inning (you have to record the postgame on long games like this) and I was getting the “we lost” vibe. 😉 Oh well, it still feels like a loss.


  5. roundrock15

    Not yet, Austin, but it could still happen. Thing is, I feel like the suspension – though I agree with you, it already feels like a loss – benefits the Astros. They get to finish the “road” game at home. Presumably, we’ll have a healthier and better-rested bullpen (though it will actually be the 17th of 21 straight games, so maybe not). Presumably, Valverde and Brocail will be back. Presumably, Berkman’s slump will be ancient history.

    And – fingers crossed! – Tim Bogar will be our manager by then… what? 😉


  6. roundrock15

    What I love is that Coop seems genuinely flummoxed on why the bullpen is struggling so much. Like maybe he hasn’t caught on that we haven’t had a starter go six or more innings since Wandy went 7.0 on April 28. We haven’t had a starter go more than 7.0 IP all year. It hasn’t happened. 21 outs – that’s the most any of our starters have gotten in one outing.

    That ain’t good, friends.


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