Astros Blast: No Need to Hit the Panic Button
By Cody Poage
See, the Astros aren’t in panic mode; or at least yet.
After dropping two-out-of-three to the New York Yankees earlier last week then a controversial loss to the Milwaukee Brewers Friday night, the popular reaction around the “Astro”-verse was to panic from one degree to another. And this was only four games in.
But the team was able to pull off an impressive 6-4 win Saturday night behind Doug Fister‘s quality debut as an Astro and the batting prowess of Tyler White and Colby Rasmus.
This game provided what the Astros have been missing since Opening Day in New York: quality pitching. While Fister didn’t go beyond five innings, he kept the Brewers bats in check as he allowed only three runs on five hits and two walks. That is a big improvement on the short outings that Collin McHugh, Mike Fiers, and Scott Feldman provided this past week. And with Dallas Keuchel back on the mound for the rubber game of this series in Milwaukee, the Astros have a good chance of winning the series and finishing the season opening road trip 3-3.
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The Astros’ offense, however, continues to provide the necessary spark to fuel the last night’s win. Left fielder Colby Rasmus drove in four of the team’s six runs behind his first and second home runs of the 2016 season. First baseman Tyler White responded well to his promotion as the fifth hitter in the lineup as he hit his third home run and drove in two.
And the bullpen manage to step up for the most part last night. Luke Gregerson pitched another scoreless inning of relief to pick up his second save of the season, and Ken Giles responded from his rough start with a quality inning. Will Harris also pitched a scoreless inning in the seventh, but Pat Neshek allowed a solo home run in the sixth inning. Overall, it was a solid outing by the pitching staff. And that will be key to the Astros as they look to put this past week of pitching meltdowns behind them.
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**Statistics provided by MLB.com**