The Astros have lost four straight since Saturday’s dramatic comeback win in Miami. But it’s not like they have been playing poorly. The offense has struggled a bit but the pitching has been pretty darn good. Three of the four losses were by a one-run margin, including Sunday’s extra-inning affair. Wandy Rodriguez and Lucas Harrell both pitched well enough to win the last two games but the Nationals pitchers matched them.
The Astros have run into a red-hot Washington Nationals club that stands alone atop the N.L. East with a 10-3 record. Bud Norris goes up against Edwin Jackson tonight as the Astros look to avoid the sweep. Jackson is coming off a complete game victory over the Reds his last time out. Brad Mills has tweaked the lineup a bit in an effort to get the offense on track. Jed Lowrie gets the day off and Jose Altuve assumes Lowrie’s second spot in the batting order. J.D. Martinez is back in the lineup. Travis Buck started for Martinez last night but had to leave the game with a tight hamstring. Here’s a look at tonight’s Astros lineup against Jackson.
The Astros will travel home for a brief three-game homestand against the Dodgers starting tomorrow. The Dodgers are also in first place in their division with a 10-3 record. J.A. Happ faces Ted Lilly in Friday’s opener.