Monday, June 24, 2024

Astros Update: Alright, We Get It Edition


I have never been so intimidated by a team that's under .500 that's only taken one of six from my team.

It's not that the Astros are this overwhelmingly powerful, sure-to-be-champion team right now. It's that they keep threatening to be. They're still 2 games under .500, but they've won 5 straight and now have to play the Rockies and Mets. This is the closest they've been to .500 yet, and their ramp up towards that point came with a 3-game sweep of the Baltimore Orioles, one of the toughest teams in the league, and a team that made it exceedingly difficult for my Yankees to get anything done. 

Baseball is weird like that. By that metric, the Astros are better than the Orioles but not as good as the Yankees, yet the Orioles, at least as it currently stands, are better than the Yankees. It's all about how well the Astros match up against these guys, and they matched up much better against Baltimore. Maybe it's because the O's are running low on viable starting options, maybe it's because you're seeing people who were alright in Houston spring to life now, like Framber Valdez, Alex Bergman and Josh Hader, but the Astros were able to slay the dragon and subdue the Orioles. I mean, honestly I'm glad they made sure the O's were losing at the same rate the Yanks were this weekend.

The Astros have been getting nice seasons out of some people who have always felt like lower-tier players in this era. Jake Meyers has always been decent, but being in an outfield with Kyle Tucker means needing to sort of back him up a lot. With Tucker hurt, therefore, Meyers has had more time to shine. So far he's got 28 RBIs and 7 homers. He's also one of the best defenders on the team and he still has a ton of range. Even with Chas McCormick's middling work, Meyers having Mauricio Dubon and Joey Loperfido in that same unit, and hitting .300, gives the Astros a contact-heavy outfield schematic that's looking to cement itself. 

Jose Altuve, at the moment, looks to be a heavy favorite to start an All-Star game. I feel like Marcus Semien is a better summation of the current moment in the AL, but if fans think he's the best in the AL, fine. Probably a Hall of Famer, probably has 6 or 7 more years of pissing me off left in him. Justin Verlander is...oh wait he's injured again. Figures. Well they just brought up Jake Bloss, and...oh he's injured already as well. they're gonna need to figure out what to do for a fifth starter?

...that's seven injured starters. And the Rangers just got Scherzer back. That's...not as intimidating as I thought. 

I dunno, they might still outhit people, but dare I say the Mets might have something of an edge in this series? They actually have several first choices in this rotation still.

I...I know this probably means they'll sneak into the postseason somehow anyway, I just think it's nice that all these calamities get to befall them for once.

Coming Tomorrow- The man this team once thought was the answer behind the plate is now recovering from a concussion in Pittsburgh. Meanwhile his successor's doing pretty well.

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