Sorry, But These Are Your Astros

Categories: Baseball, Sports

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The Astros are so bad...
Richard Justice is shocked, shocked, that the Astros are the worst team in the majors. Shocked because there's just no way anybody could have foreseen the Astros being this bad. Bad, yes, but not on track to lose 100 games for the first time in team history. Bad, but not so bad they would actually have the worst record in baseball. Bad, but not so bad that they would have a worse record than the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Guess what? As usual, Richard Justice was wrong about the Astros. And so were any others who thought the Astros might be bad, but not THAT bad. Because the Astros are, indeed, THAT bad. Worst team in the major leagues bad.

They can't pitch. They can't field. They can't hit. When they actually get on base, they have trouble running the bases. That pitching staff that the so-called experts thought would be so solid that the Astros might be semi-decent is awful, so awful that the pitching coach, Brad Arnsberg, a man called a miracle worker last season, was scapegoated and replaced a couple of weeks ago. Not that that's helped, seeing as how J.A. Happ still sucks and Bret Myers is showing why the Phillies were so willing to get rid of him.

It's easy to say that one is shocked by just how bad the Astros are this season. But while it's easy to say, it's the cheap way out because anybody who really studied the Astros during spring, who took time to see the team, to look at the roster and the changes and additions and the injuries could have foreseen the disaster that this Astros team has become.

There's a reason the Phillies were so willing to dump J.A. Happ. Sure, they got Roy Oswalt in the deal -- who is once again on the DL with back problems -- but they were also able to get rid of Happ. And while Happ's probably a nice guy, he's really nothing better than a fifth starter.

And anyone shocked by the season Myers is having is someone who has just never bothered to look at Myers' career stats. He's always been a high-ERA guy who gives up a lot of home runs. There's a reason people kept talking about the career year he was having last year and that's because he'd never in his past had a season like he was having last year. Last season was the exception. This year, he's back to normal.

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So maybe it wasn't all Brad's fault

Nelson Figueroa's already gone, and big off-season free acquisition Ryan Rowland-Smith has been awful in the minors and will only make the Astros this season if there's some kind of disaster, like the entire pitching staff, from the major league roster all the way down to the Rookie League, being wiped out and the only remaining member is Rowland-Smith. However, if the disaster is just that the pitching staff is turned into zombies, then the zombies will still pitch instead of Rowland-Smith.

GM Ed Wade decided to make Brandon Lyon the ace of the bullpen. Sure, Lyon has a history of being named the closer then sucking really bad before getting hurt, but since Wade had given him a huge, laughable contract, he was the guy. Of course, as his history shows, he sucked then got hurt. Mark Melancon has been adequate as the closer (not counting yesterday), but then again, it's not like the Astros really have that much use for a closer. And the rest of the bullpen has seemingly been occupied by guys with the last name of Rodriguez -- last week they used three pitchers named Rodriguez in a single game.

The rest of the squad is just as bad now as it was to start the season. Humberto Quintero's been injured, forcing J.R. Towles to get a majority of the starts, until he was hurt, which means that Carlos Corporan has been getting the starts. Not that it really matters, because none of them are really capable of hitting big league pitching on a consistent basis -- is it possible that maybe, just maybe, former UH catcher Chris Wallace, who has been tearing up the minors this season, makes the ultimate leap from A ball, where he started the year, to the majors just because absolutely no other guy at his position has been able to hit the ball?

Chris Johnson has been awful. Clint Barmes has been Barmes, which isn't that great. Bill Hall was cut loose when Jeff Keppinger came off of the DL. Brett Wallace shows promise, but manager Brad Mills continues to sit him against left-handed pitchers. Carlos Lee plays only because Drayton McLane gave him a huge contract; otherwise, there's no legit reason, other than injury, that Jason Bourgeois shouldn't be playing every game.

Michael Bourn and Hunter Pence are having good seasons, and Bud Norris is finally putting together a decent one. Wandy Rodriguez has been Wandy Rodriguez, good some nights, bad others, and Jordan Lyles shows some promise. Otherwise, there's nothing.

Nobody should be surprised at how bad this Astros team is. Ed Wade put together a god-awful roster, and it was evident back in March that Wade has put together a god-awful roster. And while Richard Justice is shocked by how bad this Astros team is, some of us actually saw it coming though I was wrong about one thing: I never, never, never thought the Pittsburgh Pirates would be a decent team.

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5 comments
strosssssss
strosssssss

you left off the extra "t" on brett myers. bet you pronounce j.a. actually like "j-a". but this is just like every other article written about the astros. "the astros are the worst team in baseball, saw it coming a mile away, they're the worst in almost every category, everything and everybody on the team sucks blah blah blah". they're not as bad as the stats say, the only thing that's really as bad as it seems is the bullpen, which can be fixed pretty easily by adding few pieces. but every major league bullpen is pretty fickle, it's hard to build a pen that's consistently good through multiple seasons. the truth is that this astros team, as bad as it is, is the most exciting and fun to watch astros team in the past couple seasons, just because the young guys are out there playing hard each day. it's just that they're losing. some days are better than others, but it'll turn around. luck will change and we'll call up some guys (dave carpenter should be pitching on the mlb team right now, there's no way he can do worse than our current bullpen), and we'll have a much better second half, and we'll go into the offseason a little more optimistic about next season, and hopefully a little better and more experienced. 

James
James

I don't understand this nonsense about how fun it is watching the young guys suck it up. I could understand it coming from a Devil Rays fan. They're young and good. I guess watching the 'Stros play is fun in a laughable way.  I still listen to a game every now and then because I like watching baseball, but it isn't any fun to listen to these guys get their asses handed to them.  Oddly enough, though, I was fortunate enough to attend a game where they played like all stars beating the Cubs 11-1 or so. They are as bad, if not worse than the stats say. You can't write off the worst win/loss record in the league as just a few missing pieces. It takes a complete team effort to pull this kind of season off.

strosssssss
strosssssss

The Devil Rays haven't existed since 07. It's fun to watch players out therewho are actually trying to win games and play the entire way, where as inpast seasons, the Astros were boring because they were old and miserable andlooked like they didn't even want to play. They knew they were going to losefrom the start, where as the guys on this team never count themselves outand always think they have a chance, even when everyone else knows theydon't. They're energetic, they're playing hard, they're trying. And that'swhat's fun. And if you want to look at basic stats, they're 3rd in the NL inhits, and 4th in batting average. But they're 2nd to last in ERA, and have1st in blown saves. They've blown like 17 saves or something stupid, if theyconverted at least half of those our record would look a lot better than its now, and people wouldn't be complaining so much about how terrible theyare. The foundation for a good team is there, but they need to add a fewarms and a power hitter. And I bet we find those in the 2nd half, frompeople already in the system.

strosssssss
strosssssss

Well if you actually watched a game or two you could see how many bullpen meltdowns we've had in the 7th, 8th and 9th innings, where the loss is purely on the guy pitching. Granted our offense is only decent and it isn't giving them a ton of working room, we're still missing opportunities to win games and that's purely on the bullpens shoulders. The point I'm trying to make is that even though the team isn't that good right now, they're scrappy, and the wins will start coming eventually. They'll get better in time with more experience.

James
James

I'm aware of that, I just like the name Devil Rays better.  So how many of those league leading (or tied with the league worse) errors contributed to some of those blown 17 saves? How many games wouldn't be a save situation if they could handle the ball?

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