As the Astros faced a tough road schedule to start off the season, both fantasy picks did very well at the start of the season.
Week 1 Hitter- Tyler White 10/18 H/AB, 3 R, 3 HR, 9 RBI, 0 SB, .556 AVG
The Astros couldn’t have asked for more from White in his first week of MLB action. Not only did he show his extra base power ability with a total of 5 extra-base hits, but he also showed his patience with a total of 2 walks and averaging 4.32 pitches per at bat. This patience and extra base power will help him out next week as the Astros travel home to face the Royals and Tigers.
Week 1 Pitcher- Dallas Keuchel 12.2 IP, 9 H, 5 ER, 10 BB, 13 K, 1 W, 3.55 ERA, 1.50 WHIP
Keuchel has had trouble this week meeting the expectations that his 2015 AL Cy Young campaign gave him. He struggled a bit with control in his first two starts of 2016, accumulating ten walks in 12.2 innings pitched. When there was contact, though, Keuchel was his dominant self with batters only hitting .200 off him. It is not going to get any easier for him as he comes home to face the Detroit Tigers next weekend.
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Here are my Astros in Fantasy picks for Week 2:
Collin McHugh looks to leave his first start of the season behind him when he faces two tough opponents at home this week.
In his first game of the season, McHugh could not get out of the first inning. In that span, he surrendered 5 earned runs with two walks and three hits given up. It did not help that the Yankees had three of the best career hitters with the bases loaded in Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira, and Brian McCann.
This is nothing new for McHugh, who has struggled mightily in his career with the bases loaded. In 2015 in his 2.2 innings with the bases loaded, McHugh posted a 30.37 ERA with 9 earned runs given up on four hits.
So why is McHugh the Astros in Fantasy pitcher of the week? First of all, it can’t get much worse. In all of his starts last year, McHugh has given up 5 earned runs or more five times. And after those starts, he has given up a total of 11 earned runs in his next start.
Home field advantage will help McHugh dramatically this week. In home games last season, McHugh went 12-3 with a 3.73 ERA and only eight home runs were given up as opposed to 11 home runs given up in his road games.
He will pitch at home against the Royals today and at some point during the weekend series against Detroit. McHugh faced Detroit twice last season. Recording only one decision, McHugh pitched 14 innings with nine strikeouts and only gave up 4 earned runs in those two starts
Although his ERA is still pretty high for a number 2 starter, it’s his winning that should look encouraging. Especially in the home opener today where Minute Maid Park should be electric, look for McHugh to put the past behind him and pitch two solid starts this week.
This year has been a tough start for Jose Altuve as well. In his first six games on the season, Altuve has a .208 average with two extra-base hits including a home run, an RBI, and two walks.
However, for the offense to be successful, they really need him at the top of the lineup to be the table setter they expect him to be.
That’s exactly what he did last year when Detroit came to town in the middle of August. In that three-game set, Altuve went 6-14 with 2 RBIs and a stolen base.
In a similar situation to McHugh, Altuve loves to hit at Minute Maid Park. Last season, he hit .342 with nine home runs and 32 RBIs in front of the home fans.
Altuve needs to have a great series for the Astros to have any success against these two opponents in their first two home series’ of the year. This should prove well for Altuve fantasy owners.
***Stats from Baseball-Reference***