Yoo-hoo! Has anyone seen the Houston Astros offense? It seems to have gone on holiday a couple of weeks ago and doesn’t seem to want to come back. I mean, I can’t blame it, really. I like to go on holiday, too. But come on! This is now officially ridiculous. The Astros have lost 10 out of their last 11 games.
The team has 9, yes NINE, more road games before they return to Minute Maid Park and I don’t believe any of us want to watch another 9 losses.
In their defense, I will say this: The San Francisco Giants pitching is unreal. It’s like those guys are pitching machines. Those boys have a team ERA for the season of 3.60, 6th in the majors. But despite the great pitching in the Bay Area, there were all those games before the All-Star break where the pitching wasn’t amazing. The bats have run away and hidden.
Last night in the 5-1 loss, Chris Snyder scored the lone run (a nice long blast over the left field wall) and there were only a total of 3 hits. This ain’t gonna cut it. Add to that mix the fact that Wandy Rodriguez struggled in the first couple of innings and you have a recipe for…well, what’s become typical. Wandy was able to recover and the pitching beyond the second inning was pretty good, but at that point, against the Giants pitching? The damage had already been done.
Now what. Well, there are a couple of things looming in July that could have impact. First, we have the end of month trade deadline. Jeff Luhnow has gotten pretty darn good at shocking us with moves we weren’t expecting so although I don’t anticipate mayhem at the deadline for the Astros, I think that a handful of moves are likely. We know the club would move Wandy and Brett Myers if given the chance, so perhaps moves such as those shake things up a bit.
Secondly, as we’ve all been saying, “Where the hell is Brett Wallace?” After struggling last season and being sent to AAA Oklahoma City, Brett’s found his hitting mojo. He even impressed us all when he came up for a stretch earlier in the season. In just 11 games and 36 at-bats he was hitting .333 with 2 home runs, 3 doubles and 4 runs batted in. So when Carlos Lee was traded to Miami, everyone expected to see that floppy wild hair and massive thighs return to first base in Houston. Well….we’re still waiting. Talk is that he will come up at some point, but when?
WE NEED HIS BAT RIGHT NOW. I know that rebuilding takes losses and patience and time, but come on! You’re killing us here. Watching this team night after night while they do nothing or the wrong thing is painful. Throw the fans a bone. We need something or someone to look forward to and the September call ups are too damn far away.
Meanwhile, there are still those calling for Brad Mills head on a platter. I’ve always been a fan of Millsie. He’s a nice guy and I have always thought that he was dealt an unfair situation when he came to Houston from Boston. But my patience is running thin and more and more I think that perhaps the talent on the field is not the problem….the coaching is. Is it Mike Barnett? After all the team’s not hitting. Is it Doug Brocail? The pitching hasn’t been as good as it could be with this group of guys. Is it Brad Mills? Perhaps the direction from the top just not what this young club needs.
I’m not in the clubhouse and I don’t have a super secret spy decoder ring (although I always wanted one) to figure out this mess. But someone needs to figure it out…and fast or this year will be as disastrous as last.
For now, I’m packing a bag (2 really) and taking the weeone on this year’s ballpark tour. We’re heading to San Diego where we’ll hopefully get to see our boys win a few road games and then we’ll pitstop in Arizona for a couple of games before we head back to Houston. Cross your fingers, hold your breath, wear your lucky shirts. This team needs all the help it can get.
Terri Schlather (AGirlintheSouth) is the tortured Senior Houston Astros Writer for Aerys Sports. You can email her at email@example.com, or follow her ridiculous ramblings on sports, vodka and the weeone on twitter @agirlinthesouth.