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AL West Standings
Team W L Pct GB RS RA Diff Home Road East Cent West L10 Strk
Oakland84.6675239135-33-10-00-08-27-3W5
Houston65.5456757103-33-20-00-05-25-5L1
Seattle58.3855682-262-43-40-00-05-84-6W1
Anaheim48.33346066-62-42-40-00-04-83-7L1
Arlington37.30043248-162-31-40-00-00-23-7L2

Last Game:
D-Backs 14
Astros 7




August 6 - This Date in Astros History
August 6 - This Date in Astros History
August 6

2000 - Chris Truby belts a grand slam and drives in six to lead an 8-1 pounding of Montreal. Jeff Bagwell adds four hits. Scott Elarton scatters four hits to pick up his 12th win of the season.
1999 - Carl Everett comes off the disabled list with a 4-for-5 performance, a homer and five RBIs to lead the Astros over the Cubs, 6-1, in the opener of a twinbill at Wrigley Field. Jose Lima wins his 15th of the season. Everett sits out the nightcap which Houston loses, 6-0, to rookie Andy Lorraine.
1990 - Joe Morgan becomes the first player inducted into baseball's Hall of Fame who has had a significant part of his career with the Houston Astros (1963-1971). His MVPs and World Series triumphs came while with Cincinnati and he chooses to be inducted as a Red.
1974 - Bob Watson homers, triples and drives in four to pace a 13-4 clubbing in San Francisco. Besides Watson, Greg Gross, Milt May and Doug Rader notch three hits apiece. Mike Cosgrove pitches 4-1/3rd innings of relief for the win.
1971 - Nickel Beer Night at the Dome ends, appropriately, with a Miller. Bob Miller of San Diego tosses a 1-2-3 ninth to seal a 4-3 Houston loss. After the game, drunken fans spill onto the field, looting the Padre dugout and pantomiming pitching and baserunning until police restore order.



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JUL/AUG CALENDAR

Date      Opp      Result
7/24      SEA      W 8-2
7/25      SEA*     W 7-2
7/26      SEA*     L 7-6
7/27      SEA      W 8-5
7/28      LA       L 5-2
7/29      LA       L 4-2
7/30      off        --
7/31     @ANA      W 9-6
8/01     @ANA      L 5-4
8/02     @ANA*     W 6-5
8/03      off        --
8/04     @ARI      W 8-2
8/05     @ARI     L 14-7
8/06     @ARI       ----
8/07     @OAK       ----
8/08     @OAK*      ----
8/09     @OAK*      ----
8/10      SF        ----
8/11      SF        ----
8/12      SF        ----
8/13      off        --
8/14      SEA       ----
8/15      SEA       ----
8/16      SEA*      ----
8/17      COL       ----
8/18      COL*      ----
8/19     @COL       ----
8/20     @COL*      ----
8/21     @SD        ----
8/22     @SD        ----
8/23     @SD*       ----
8/24      ANA       ----
8/25      ANA       ----
8/26      ANA       ----
8/27      ANA*      ----
8/28      OAK       ----
8/29      OAK       ----
8/30      OAK*      ----
8/31      off        --

* - day game.

Jul/Aug record:   6 - 5
Sept record:        -
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Houston Astros recap - 07/30/20 - Astros Split Opening Homestand
Astros Split Opening Homestand
Pitching In Shambles After Injury Bug

Javier: Bright spot
(c) Karen Warren/Houston Chronicle
Are the Astros as good as they looked against Seattle while winning three of four or as feeble as they sometimes looked while being swept by the Dodgers? My answer is "neither". Those two teams represent the worst and the best teams we are apt to see during the regular season and the Astros played accordingly.

The bats came to play against the M's while winning Opening Night, 7-2, and the next day, 8-2. They were a Chris Devenski meltdown from winning the third game and won the Monday finale, 8-5. Practically every big bat in the lineup produced a home run other than Carlos Correa who got his against the Dodgers.

Oh, yes, those blue-clad cads with the chips on their shoulders. The Houston bats went to sleep during losses of 5-2 and 4-2 while the top three in the lineup looked totally inept.

Joe Kelly, who pitched for the cheating Red Sox of 2018, sent the message so many in the media had desperately craved, sending high heat over the head of Alex Bregman then a pitch behind Carlos Correa then ran his mouth on his way back to the Dodger dugout. His punishment? An eight-game suspension which he'll probably appeal and have it reduced to four games the next time he's in New York.

I'm not of the mind to make too much of the incident until we see what unfolds in future weeks. Dare I say the punishment (over 1/8th of the abbreviated season) was more severe than the crime and was meant to send a message to the rest of the majors. We'll see how well others get the memo.

Houston got their first taste of the dumb rule putting a runner on second for every half-inning of extras on Wednesday. If today's hitters knew anything about moving runners over, this would be like a gift run. But in today's dumbed-down whack-a-mole game, everyone just stands around and waits for someone to hit a home run - which Los Angeles did to win it in 13 innings.

The Astros' pitching staff is in tatters after six games. Justin Verlander made the biggest headlines when he was shelved with a strained right forearm. Is he lost for the season as the breathless early reports claimed or does he just need a few weeks of rest and rehab before we see him again in September? Time will tell.

However, the Astros have so many hurting arms that they can't be socially distanced down in the bullpen. Besides Verlander, Brad Peacock, Austin Pruitt, Rogelio Armenteros, Jose Urquidy and Joe Biagini who are on the 10-day IL, Devenski and Ryan Pressly also have soreness.

To take up the slack is a seemingly open audition of young arms. Nine rookies currently adorn the expanded 16-man (you read that right) pitching staff, some of them experiencing their big league debuts in the past week. The brightest light may be Cristian Javier, who started in Verlander's spot Wednesday and fanned eight Dodgers while allowing just one run.

Brandon Bielak also pitched well and received his first big league win against Seattle. Blake Taylor, Enoli Paredes, Nivaldo Rodriguez and Andre Scrubb also made debuts with various levels of success. For five years, there's been little upward mobility for Houston pitching prospects. This is their time to get their foot in the door and be a solid factor for the coming decade.

While the Astros can moan their misfortunes, they aren't alone. Numerous teams were shorthanded due to COVID or injuries. It seems obvious the three-week ramp-up to the short season wasn't enough to get a lot of pitchers ready. Had the owners and the union put pitchers into camp in early June, as was first rumored, the training might have been a different story. 2020 will be a war of attrition, a war the firing of Jeff Luhnow made worse because of the time lost rebuilding the pitching staff.

Lance McCullers (1-0) will try to follow up his opening win when Houston visits the Angels at 8:10 pm CDT Friday to begin a nine-day road trip. Zack Greinke (0-0), who disappointed in his first start, will pitch the Saturday contest while Josh James (0-0) tries to improve in the series finale. After a day off, the Astros will visit the Diamondbacks and Athletics before returning home.

All the injuries will make for a challenging season for Dusty Baker, who saw his 2021 option picked up earlier in the week. The 71-year-old skipper can't really be adequately judged on this season's results so that seems the only fair thing to do.

Rookie GM James Click made his first trade, acquiring righthanded pitcher Hector Velasquez from Baltimore for a player-to-be-named. It will take time to get Velasquez in shape but Click was already desperate enough to kick the tires on 43-year-old Fernando Rodney before the trade was announced.

On most nights, the Astros will need to score five or more runs if they are to win. That will be easier than you think against all the watered-down staffs around the majors but the season will become a lot drearier if the high-paid hitters atop the Houston lineup don't light a spark soon.

- Bob Hulsey



Houston Baseball: The Early Years 1861-1961
(click to order)

MORE NEWS ARTICLES...

Astrowire
RSS Feed | News Archives
Fiers is moving on, just like he always has - New York Times
McCullers has been in this rough spot before - Houston Chronicle
D-backs post 9-run inning, hammer Astros - Field Level Media
Latest on Astros' rotation - MLB Trade Rumors
Short leash puts James back in Astrosí bullpen - Houston Chronicle
Bielak taking James' place in Astros' rotation - Houston Chronicle
Bielak eyes first MLB start in Arizona finale - Astros.com
James back to Astros' bullpen; Bielak to start - Astros.com
Strong start unravels 'like a feeding frenzy' - Astros.com
McCullers hated Arizona opening its roof ... a lot - Houston Chronicle
Inside-the-park HR, nine-run inning sinks Astros in Arizona - Associated Press
For Correa, it's about discipline and feeling 'sexy' - Houston Chronicle
'Grinding' Diamondbacks drop opener to Astros - Arizona Republic
Astros pound Bumgarner, Diamondbacks - Field Level Media
Bats back Javier as Astros roll past Diamondbacks - Houston Chronicle
A's fans won't get to heckle Astros, but Dave Stewart takes shot at 'cheaters' - Houston Chronicle
Quad injury sidelines Brantley - Houston Chronicle
The 2020 Astros, with an assist from Sugar Land - Houston Chronicle
Baker on Roberto Osuna injury: 'Doesn't look real good' - Houston Chronicle
McCullers eyes another win vs. D-backs - Astros.com
Report: Osuna needs Tommy John surgery - Astros.com
Notes: Brantley slowed; Baker on bunting - Astros.com
Astros send reminder: 'It's a scary lineup' - Astros.com
Altuve, Correa homer as Astros tag Bumgarner, Diamondbacks 8-2 - Associated Press
Javier scheduled to start for Houston at Arizona - Associated Press
On deck: Astros at Arizona - Houston Chronicle
Astros to acquire De Jong from Skeeters - Houston Chronicle
Javier assumes vital role for Astros - Houston Chronicle
Astros reach agreement with RHP De Jong - Astros.com
What's gone right -- and wrong -- for Astros? - Astros.com
Taylor's successful homecoming - Houston Chronicle
Valdez, Taylor answer call in Astrosí win - Houston Chronicle
Click to rejoin Astros after self-quarantine - Houston Chronicle
Astros defeat Angels in 11 innings to cap series - Houston Chronicle
Thumb injury not a concern for Pressly - Houston Chronicle
Astros looking at bullpen options as Osuna heads to IL - Houston Chronicle
Astros give Correa scheduled day off - Houston Chronicle
Astros continue road trip in Arizona - Astros.com
Osuna (elbow soreness) placed on IL - Astros.com
Valdez gives life to 'tired' Astros in relief - Astros.com
Bregman's 11th-inning RBI sends Astros past Angels - Associated Press
Astros pitching is in dire straits - SportsRadio 610
Osuna latest injured pitcher - Houston Chronicle
Osuna exits game with arm discomfort, will undergo MRI - Yahoo Sports
Aug. 1: Angels 5, Astros 4 (10 innings) - Houston Chronicle
Hermosillo helps Angels survive Astros in 10th - Field Level Media
Astros suffer extra-innings loss to Angels - Houston Chronicle
Astros place Devenski on Injured List, select Sanabria - MLB Trade Rumors
Astros bullpen getting stressed - Houston Chronicle
Astros give Brantley day off to rest sore leg - Houston Chronicle
Broussard singer makes her mark singing national anthem for Astros - Lafayette Daily Advertiser
James duels Ohtani in series finale - Astros.com
Top prospect Whitley dealing with sore arm - Astros.com
Another blow to depleted 'pen in Astros' loss - Astros.com
Angels rally twice to beat Astros in 10 innings - Associated Press
Young guns step up - Houston Chronicle
Astros get victory but not the boos they deserve in first road game of 2020 - USA Today
Tucker guides Astros to high-scoring win over Angels - Field Level Media
Tucker leads Astros past Angels - Houston Chronicle
Astros embark on first road trip amid COVID-19 - Houston Chronicle
Astros owner to court: No questions about sign stealing, please - Los Angeles Times
Astros injury report - Houston Chronicle
Astros make it official, sign 43-year-old reliever Fernando Rodney - Houston Chronicle
Crane: We took cheating 'bullet' for Yankees, Red Sox - New York Post
Crane on scandal fallout: 'I didnít handle it as well as I should have' - Houston Chronicle
Greinke aims to go deeper vs. Angels - Astros.com
Notes: Pressly (elbow) nears 2020 debut - Astros.com
Tucker's career-high 4 RBIs carry Astros - Astros.com
Tucker drives in 4 runs in Astros' win over Angels - Associated Press
For Kalas, a different game with no fans - Houston Chronicle
Crane opens up on sign-stealing scandal: 'It weighs on all of us every day' - USA Today
Crane offers advice to Rodriguez on buying Mets - USA Today
On deck: Astros at Angels - Houston Chronicle
Debuts bittersweet for Astros rookies this year - Houston Chronicle
'Diligent' Astros take first full road trip of season during pandemic - Houston Chronicle
Astros hit the road with McCullers at Big A - Astros.com
Inbox: Will Astros keep young arms around? - Astros.com
Wilson slams Hershiser after his Altuve dig - Houston Chronicle


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- Bob Hulsey