It was a tough week for the Astros who went 2-4, including a couple of 12-inning losses. Today’s game was an especially difficult defeat considering how well Wandy Rodriguez pitched. Wandy was in line for the win until Brett Myers blew a save for the first time this season. The Pirates ultimately won the game in the 12th thanks to a bloop double by Clint Barmes.
Rodriguez gets honorable mention this week even though he wasn’t able to register a win. Wandy was 0-1 in two starts for the week. He pitched 16 innings, allowing five runs on nine hits and three walks while striking out nine. Rodriguez retired the last 14 batters he faced in today’s game. The eight inning no-decision brought his ERA down to 1.99 for the year.
Bud Norris was able to earn a win Friday in Pittsburgh and is this week’s runner-up. Norris shut out the Pirates for six innings, fanning eight, and allowing only three hits. Bud and his fellow pitchers gave the Astros a chance to win every game this week but the offense was pretty much missing in action.
The winner of the Star Performer of the Week Award this time around is Wilton Lopez. The right-hander came out of the Astros bullpen in four of the six games during the week, getting the job done every time. Lopez pitched 5 & 1/3 scoreless innings and posted six strikeouts. Wilton scored bonus points with me when he beaned Marlins third-baseman Hanley Ramirez on Wednesday. Ramirez had shown-up Lopez earlier in the season in Miami with a leisurely stroll around the bases after a homerun. Lopez exacted his revenge for the only homer he has allowed in 2012 with his only hit-by-pitch of the year. It had to be intentional – Lopez has pinpoint control and hasn’t walked a batter all season.