Paulino Does his Best ‘Killer L’ Impression


J.A. Happ struck out 6 Washington Nationals tonight over 6 scoreless innings before the bullpen gave up 7 runs in the 8th to lose the game. In not-so-surprising news Matt Lindstrom of ‘Killer L’ fame gave up 3 hits and an earned run without recording an out. He’s now given up 10 hits and 6 earned runs over his last 1.2 recorded innings. For those of you keeping score at home, that is not good for one of the highest paid pitchers on your staff. That’s not good for anyone. In fact, it’s awful. However, the main culprit tonight was Felipe Paulino who gave up 5 earned in 2/3 of an inning in just his third appearance since coming off the DL. I don’t mind that Paulino was in a hold situation when he clearly isn’t 100% since the Astros have nothing to play for and Paulino will be Houston’s 5th starter next season. However, wouldn’t he and the Astros be better served with him stretching his arm out in long-inning situations?

In any case, the loss reminds me of one of my key points from last night’s article I forgot to include. My post was in response to Steve Berthiaume’s article predicting the Astros will win the NL Central next season. The 8-3 loss tonight only illustrates one of the most obvious flaws in the reasoning of such a prediction. Houston’s run differential is now -97. I repeat, -97, which is good for 14th out of 16 NL teams. The only teams worse are Arizona and Pittsburgh. In the NL Central alone, two teams are behind Houston in the standings despite a better run differential. Milwaukee (-82) and Chicago (-72) don’t show huge differences, however St. Louis is 173 runs ahead of Houston at +76 and Cincinnati is 195 runs ahead at +98. I’m not sure Houston’s offseason will equate to a difference that great. In fact, I’ll go on record as saying it won’t.

Once again, I hope I’m wrong…