Home/Randomness.

My computer ate my first post. It was much better than this one.

– Back at home for the summer. I knew the Rangers were playing a double header and right after I got home I went to see if it was on tv and, of course, it was not. FSN Southwest/FSN Houston is very badly managed. Don’t they understand that I want to watch all the baseball that is available (and that doesn’t mean Big 12 games!)? And MLBtv seems to be absurd about their restrictions, so I guess the next time I’ll see the Rangers live will be the Astros/Rangers series…

– On the vein of the Rangers, Dave Raymond said that the Rangers bullpen had lost the first game, and it was crazy just how fast I rushed to my phone to make sure that it wasn’t a certain lefty that did it…and it wasn’t. So I’m good. 😉

– Props to the handful of Houston Texans (and Hunter Pence) who hit homers today for the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Houston. The footballers hit five together and Pence hit six without warming up.

– I watched The Office for 40 minutes instead of the game, which says a lot about how much I like the show. Because I’ve gotten people to work for me so I can watch baseball…haha. Anyway, Jim and Pam still aren’t together, but that tension filled storyline is back…just in case you were wondering. Also, Jan and Michael kind of broke up…

The Baseball Cube is cool because you can see who’s been teammates with a player and for how long. I think it’s cool, and different then the normal stats you see at places like Baseball Reference.

– Is it just me, or is Brandon Phillips a certifiable Astros killer this season?

– Astros 7, Reds 5: "Good Wandy" showed up, the offense was decent, so of course the bullpen blew. God forbid every facet of the game show up positively in any given Astros game. I am very, very frustrated at Chad Qualls after this game (and that’s saying a lot, I’m usually very lenient with Qualls); Wandy really deserved this win. Career high Ks, just a really strong outing. But we did get the win, so I can’t be too terribly angry. I just really feel for Wandy right now…

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Not a Post Deserving a Title

Both the Rangers and the Astros lost by 9 runs tonight, Rangers 1-10 and Astros 2-11. At least they managed to score a run or two; I don’t mind beatings so much as long as we score a run/runs. There’s not much else to say, other than both K-Loe and Albers had fairly weak outings and the offense was dead (Rangers had a good reason; Hughes was nasty, and well, they were playing the Yankees.) It was pretty funny, actually, how both games were so synchronized: the break-downs were almost simultaneous. Oh well, Rangers are going against Pettitte tomorrow, that’s a guaranteed win, right? Ha.

In other news, the A’s won in extras, thanks to Dan the Man’s RBI double. One outta three ain’t bad, I suppose.

Sigh.

After watching the entire sixteenth inning affair the other night via MLBGameday (and ESPNGamecast and my cellphone Gameday after Gameday decided to lag) and only getting a loss out of all my troubles, I’d decided that I wasn’t going to blog until I was home and got FSN Houston every day instead of once every week or so.

Clearly I was lying to myself.

It’s kind of funny, but I actually wanted to blog about how absurd some of the fans that lurk around the ‘net are, but then that would make me a hypocrite, huh? But then again, I don’t think we should call up Patton from AA and I don’t think we should bench Biggio in favor of Loretta. Yes, Patton is good, no doubt about it. But he’s not ready. Albers jumped from AA to the bigs and he hasn’t been bad, but I can’t talk about that because I never saw him down in AA. I saw Patton once in Corpus, though, and he seemed to get really antsy when things weren’t going his way. Maybe that was just me, and he had only made a couple of starts – maybe he was still nervous. As for Loretta for Biggio, just…I do admit that Loretta should probably get more starts than he’s getting, because he is obviously not built for a pinch hitter’s role. I’d just like Bidge to get his 3,000, then we’ll deal with everything else when that happens.

Just had to get that off my chest.

Also, both the Yankees and the Astros have lost seven straight. Buster Olney was just saying on Sportscenter that Torre might get the boot. I’m not hearing anything about Scrap Iron…I can’t decide if that is a good or a bad thing right now.

Oh yeah, Pence is up. Hope everyone is happy now. I’m not saying that it wasn’t a good and/or necessary move, but … I just feel really bad for Burke. This is why being a girl sportsfan is so hard, haha.

Cack Awards #1

Player of the Game, 4/19:

Luke Scott. Amazing defense, amazing offense. I had an amazing amount of confidence last night, after seeing that Lidge had made it out of the seventh inning without giving up a run. I thought it would be great of the team to get him a win, but being down four runs, it didn’t seem likely. Somehow, though, it happened, thanks to Scott’s double.  There was no one else I would have wanted in that situation but Luke, and it paid off.

Player of the Game, 4/20:

Craig Biggio. Grand slam to pad for the three runs the bullpen would give up in the next inning. Not much else to say about that. Albers had an adequate start, too; I’m good with it.

Hopeless performance, 4/20:

The Rangers pitching staff. 13 hits, TWELVE walks, 16 runs, all earned. "You’ve gotta feel bad for Ron Washington." – Josh Lewin, all night long.

WHY OH WHY, April:

Alex Rodriguez. 2 homers tonight – that’s 12 for the season, already. At least the Yankees didn’t win…not that I really care about that rivalry, but still.

Washington just beat the Marlins in extras, fourteen innings. This is very good, since Miguel Cabrera didn’t play today and I forgot to take him off my fantasy roster for the day and I’m mad at the Marlins as a result.

A Quick Run-Down and a Special Guest

Astros: Currently 7-6 (that’s over .500, people!). Although we didn’t get to beat up on Mitre like I thought we were going to on Tuesday due to injury, we were still able to pull out the win and sweep the mini-series thanks to timely hitting in the middle innings. As for tonight, I was fearing the worst after both Lane and Everett struck out with the bases loaded early in the game. However, we beat up on the Cincy bullpen and ended up with a blow-out. Admittedly, the best I was able to do last night and tonight was follow along with Gameday via my cell phone, but it was good enough. Maybe it’s better luck if I don’t get to watch the games (I’m stuck in Shreveport, Louisiana for school, and since we are closer to Dallas than Houston, we get Rangers games MUCH more often).

Rangers: Tonight Mark Buehrle threw a no-hitter against them. I’m very displeased by this. Guys, if you’re going to get no-hit, at least let it be by the hot one! (that’s Jon Garland, by the way.)/silly girltalk

Athletics: Another team to finally get over .500! Haren had a great game today against the Angels, outpitching John Lackey. Chavez hit when he needed to, which was the most important thing.

Other: John Maine had a no-hitter through the 6th. This makes my fantasy team very happy. (side note: Willis had an amazingly hard time to get outs in the first inning. I was so surprised. And amused, I must say.) Jason Bay going 3-3 also did. The Nats (my underdog team) won! In extras! Poor Phillies, they can’t win for anything, can they.

Finally, my brother played my part tonight and watched the entire Astros game. He came up with this analysis that I promised I’d post here:

Biggio
At-Bat #1: 6 pitches (3 swung, 3 held) 2-2 count – Flyout
At-Bat #2: 4 pitches (3 swung, 1 held) 1-2 count – Lineout
At-Bat #3: 5 pitches (2 swung, 3 held) 2-2 count – Strikeout Swinging
At-Bat #4: 4 pitches (2 swung, 2 held) 1-2 count – Strikeout Swinging (foul bunt)
At-Bat #5: 2 pitches (1 swung, 1 held) 0-1 count – Force
AVERAGE: 4.2 pitches (2.2 swung, 2 held) 2-2 count

Lamb
At-Bat #1: 2 pitches (1 swung, 1 held) 0-1 count – Groundout
At-Bat #2: 2 pitches (1 swung, 1 held) 0-1 count – Single
At-Bat #3: 4 pitches (2 swung, 2 held) 0-2 count – Double
At-Bat #4: 3 pitches (1 swung, 2 held) 2-0 count – Fielder’s Choice
At-Bat #5: 4 pitches (1 swung, 3 held) 2-1 count – Double Play
AVERAGE: 3 pitches (1.2 swung, 1.8 held) 1-1 count

Berkman
At-Bat #1: 4 pitches (3 swung, 1 held) 0-2 count – Strikeout Looking
At-Bat #2: 8 pitches (5 swung, 3 held) 3-2 count – Fielder’s Choice
At-Bat #3: 6 pitches (3 swung, 3 held) 3-2 count – Groundout
At-Bat #4: 1 pitch (1 swung, 0 held) 0-0 count – Single
AVERAGE: 4.75 pitches (3 swung, 1.75 held) 2-2 count

Lee
At-Bat #1: 6 pitches (3 swung, 3 held) 2-2 count – Flyout
At-Bat #2: 5 pitches (0 swung, 5 held) 3-1 count – Walk
At-Bat #3: 7 pitches (4 swung, 3 held) 3-2 count – Groundout
At-Bat #4: 6 pitches (1 swung, 5 held) 3-2 count – Walk
AVERAGE: 6 pitches (2 swung, 4 held) 3-2 count

Scott
At-Bat #1: 3 pitches (1 swung, 2 held) 2-0 count – Robbed HR
At-Bat #2: 6 pitches (2 swung, 4 held) 3-2 count – Walk
At-Bat #3: 7 pitches (4 swung, 3 held) 3-2 count – Strikeout Swinging
AVERAGE: 5.3 pitches (2.3 swung, 3 held) 3-1 count

Lane
At-Bat #1: 2 pitches (1 swung, 1 held) 0-1 count – Double
At-Bat #2: 4 pitches (3 swung, 1 held) 0-2 count – Strikeout Swinging
At-Bat #3: 3 pitches (1 swung, 2 held) 2-0 count – Groundout
At-Bat #4: 1 pitch (1 swung, 0 held) 0-0 count – HR
AVERAGE: 2.5 pitches (1.5 swung, 1 held) 1-1 count

Everett
At-Bat #1: 5 pitches (2 swung, 3 held) 2-2 count – Strikeout Swinging
At-Bat #2: 5 pitches (2 swung, 3 held) 2-2 count – Strikeout Swinging
At-Bat #3: 5 pitches (2 swung, 3 held) 2-2 count – Pop Up
At-Bat #4: 3 pitches (2 swung, 1 held) 1-1 count – Groundout
AVERAGE: 4.5 pitches (2 swung, 2.5 held) 2-2 count

Ausmus
At-Bat #1: 1 pitch (1 swung, 0 held) 0-0 count – Flyout
At-Bat #2: 3 pitches (1 swung, 2 held) 1-1 count – Groundout
At-Bat #3: 5 pitches (0 swung, 5 held) 2-2 count – Strikeout Looking
At-Bat #4: 2 pitches (1 swung, 1 held) 0-1 count – Double
AVERAGE: 2.75 pitches (.75 swung, 2 held) 1-1 count

Sampson
At-Bat #1: 3 pitches (2 swung, 1 held) 0-2 count – Strikeout Swinging
At-Bat #2: 3 pitches (2 swung, 1 held) 0-2 count – Strikeout Swinging
AVERAGE: 3 pitches (2 swung, 1 held) 0-2 count

Palmiero
At-Bat #1: 4 pitches (2 swung, 2 held) 1-2 count – HBP
At-Bat #2: 1 pitch (1 swung, 0 held) 0-0 count – Bunt Single
AVERAGE: 2.5 pitches (1.5 swung, 1 held) 0-1 count

Loretta
At-Bat #1: 3 pitches (1 swung, 2 held) 1-1 count – Single
No average needed

Team: 149 pitches (71 swung, 78 held) Too lazy for counts

Innings 1-3: 36 pitches (20 swung, 16 held) .100 AVG, .100 OBP, .200 SLG
Innings 4-6: 65 pitches (33 swung, 32 held) .181 AVG, .308 OBP, .272 SLG
Innings 7-9: 48 pitches (18 swung, 30 held) .385 AVG, .467 OBP, .615 SLG

EVEN Deeper…
1-3: 56% swung
4-6: 51% swung
7-9: 38% swung

What does this mean, at least in this sample? Well, Innings 1-3 were a wreck. In 4-6, the hitters swung more, fouling off more pitches (26% of Harang’s pitches were fouled off in those three innings) and forcing a starter who had the Astros number (8 Ks through 6 innings) out before a starter who had given up two home runs (Sampson). In innings 7-9, the hitters were more selective (even though the sample size is smaller than 4-6) , and it seemed to provide more opportunities against relievers, who tend to try placing pitches more than starters do. Even with the lack of sample, note that the lowest percentage of pitches swung generated the highest slugging percentage and batting averages.

Catching Up

Got a paper to write and a test to study for, but I need to update before I forget everything!

The two game series with the Phillies was interesting, to say the least. Carlos Lee had a great offensive awakening – three homers, one a granny. If only we could get him hitting like that at home! Mostly, though, I’m pleased that we hit Cole Hamels this time around. Last year, the best we could do was a homer by Jimerson, it seems like. Too bad the last game had to get rained out, although I heard on the radio tonight that the guys had a cheese steak eating contest – I bet that was fun.

Tonight’s game, Wandy Rodriguez vs. Anibal Sanchez. I was talking to a friend before the game and I said that I hoped Sanchez wasn’t going to pull a no-hitter on us. Thank goodness he definitely did not. With his spotty control, he and the Marlins pitching staff handed out (at least) 10 walks, which meant we always had runners on base. Not that we could bring them home in most of those cases, but at least we had the opportunities. I was very frustrated that Wandy didn’t get a win for his very good start, but I think Qualls’ outing more than made up for it. And Mo’s walk-off single – 1-2 with 3 walks was not bad, not bad at all. Garner should be very happy with his getting on base so often. I’m kind of frustrated with Lee’s lack of production at home, but I’m sure he’ll get it going soon. It will be El Caballo time at home soon enough!

Other goings on:

Kinsler wins AL Player of the Week honors. He’s definitely deserving of this award; his bat is scorching right now. Yay, Ian!

– For the ladies: The "touch" collection. I’m going to be totally honest; I think it’s a good idea. I know that the pink/green/yellow etc etc Astros shirts are a hit with the women in Houston. Alyssa Milano will definitely cash in on this. But it’s not for me. Give me a regular tee or jersey any day; I want to be comfortable at a game, and somehow I don’t think those clothes are very comfy. Besides, they only have so many teams represented right now, and surprisingly enough (not), the Astros don’t have anything yet.

The Great Renaming, the Rangers Loss, and Kameron Loe

I’m sure once I get used to all this blogging stuff, I won’t post a hundred times a day. But for now…

So, I had to rename my blog because I wasn’t a good MLblogger and didn’t check to see if someone else had my name. And they did. Oops. Well, I’ve changed it. It took me a quite embarrassing amount of time, and it’s still not great, but I do know that I love to hear "and there’s _____ with a line shot to the Crawford Boxes!" And watching it happen, of course.

Ha, the baseball gods love to remind me that you win some and you lose some. Both the A’s and the Rangers lost today. I’m not sure exactly how the A’s game went, but I do know that for five innings, Shields dominated the Rangers lineup, except for Young who had a solo homerun. Then in the sixth (the Sonic Slam Inning, what a coincidence…) Ian blasted a solo shot (his 4th already this season. Move over A-Rod!) and Young hit a three run homer and suddenly they were back in it. I was really hoping that they could tie it up or pull ahead, but it just didn’t end up happening. But Ian had a great defensive play, a shuffle pass to Tex, and Loe (and Benoit) did a great job out of the ‘pen, so it wasn’t all bad. Although I’m sure he will, I really hope Loe can stay with the big club for the entire season. He has great stuff and he rocks the high socks (maybe I’ll explain that later)…anyway. Loe won me over last season; I went to a Round Rock/Oklahoma game in Round Rock after he’d been sent down and he was one of the only Redhawks that signed. Pretty much the only one, except for White Sox pitcher (that still makes me sad to say) John Danks, who’s from the Austin area.

I need to break this habit of blogging so late! Geez.