Who’s trending down during three straight series wins for the Astros?
The first week of May is behind the Astros after starting off 2-5. They find themselves in a groove winning 6 of the last eight including three straight series wins against the Athletics, Rangers, and Angels. With not much offense mustered in these last eight games, only 28 runs, the Astros found themselves in close games late.
Some players stood out and managed hits when they were needed the most, and some players were silent as the slumps continue. Jake Marisnick can’t be to blame for a while as he’s been optioned for Fresno to work on his swings and find his range, so who else has been silent as the Astros roll along?
Let’s take a look at who is trending down as we reach the mid-point of May.
Trending Down: Marwin Gonzalez
Where’d you go, Margo? After having a stellar start to May with seven hits in 6 games, Gonzalez is now hitless in 6 straight. His last hit came on May 8th going 2-4. Since then he has seen 21 at-bats coming up short every time lowering his batting average from .256 to .218. He struck out six times and couldn’t earn a walk in that span either.
Despite the Astros winning ways this past week, Marwin’s shortcomings may have been overlooked. It’s not as noticeable when the team is winning. But we’ve witnessed our first casualty being sent down for assignment. Let’s hope the bottom of the order starts turning this around or I’m afraid it will be shuffled all season long.
Trending Down: Derek Fisher
Fisher has been on one list or the other week to week. This week, on the trending down list. Again. It’s pretty simple. In his last six games, he’s been at the plate 14 times and managed one hit. Also, he has four hits in May playing in 12 games. In his last six games, he’s batting a 0.071 average lowering his season batting average to .174. He’s struck out six times, walked once and drove in one run.
Not great. He is needed in the line-up though playing five straight games sitting out his last two for obvious reasons. The team called up Tony Kemp who went 1-3 last night, but no matter which, these six thru nine hitters results stay the same. Someone will have to emerge from the slump to solidify a late-season run to the postseason.
Trending Down: Gerrit Cole
Look. Cole has been lights out for the Astros this season. Dominant. Brilliant. And he’s playing like a CY Young Award candidate on a pitching staff bolstered with talent. But since we are looking at trends week to week, Cole has been slightly trending down. Since his May 4th complete game, going nine innings allowing a one-hit shutout, Cole has drifted back to earth a bit.
In his last two games, Cole has pitched 11 total innings allowing four earned runs on nine base hits. He gave up two long balls, walked five but struck out 16 in his 11 innings of work. He notched the win on May 9th and had a no-decision in that 5-3 win against the Angels on May 15th as the Astros came from behind to salvage a win.
Cole has been remarkable and may, in fact, be the Astros second best pitcher. This is just an observation for the fact that he’s had his two shortest spans of work in these last two games going at least 6.2 innings in his previous seven games. It’s just something to keep an eye on. That’s all.
*** Stats courtesy of Baseball-Reference and MLB.com ***