With 45 games left and a star-studded lineup on the DL, who has trended up to help the Astros during the past week?
The Astros are sole possessors of first place in the AL West over the Athletics by 4.5 games. At 73-44, they are twenty-nine games above .500. On pace to finish 101-61, the Astros are slated to finish with the same record from last season. Not bad for what seems like a World Series hangover, yet they are not playing up to their full potential.
The Astros are 6-4 in their last ten games after dropping Friday’s game 5-2 to the Mariners, who are trying to gain ground in the standings as they are falling back of the Athletics, who now own second place in the AL West.
Nonetheless, there is still plenty of baseball left to be played. And by that, I mean 45 games. More than a quarter of the season left to go. In these last nine games, there have been some players who shined during the west coast trip. Let see who was trending up this week.
Trending Up: Jake Marisnick
What a great addition to the trending up list. When the team so desperately needed someone to step up due to injuries, Marisnick has answered the call. In his last seven games, Marisnick has seen 21 plate appearances and has six hits to show for it, good for a .400 batting average. In this span, he added three extra-base hits, including two doubles and a home run. He’s also earned four walks and struck out just three times. His batting average has climbed to .217 on the season, finally getting above .200 for the first time since very early April. He spent some time in the minors getting reps and bounced right back.
Hopefully, the Marisnick you see is the guy you get come postseason because these injuries are adding up and this unlikely hero has been the hottest bat in the clubhouse right now. Welcome back, Marisnick, and we hope that your latest injury doesn’t sideline you for long.
Trending Up: Marwin Gonzalez
This super utility player has had his moments all season. And this week is one of those moments where it’s worth pointing out. In his last eight games, Gonzalez has 36 plate appearances with 12 hits to the tune of .387 batting average bringing his season total to a .242.
Since the start of August, he’s notched fourth multi-hit games and is currently on a six-game hit streak. He has five extra-base hits with four home runs. Four. In eight games. That’s spectacular. He’s driven in 8 of the teams 42 runs. Like Marisnick, Gonzalez has answered the plea for help as the team is banged up. Gonzalez mashes and provides relief. The playing time will continue, and we’re hoping the productions does as well. Imagine if these guys remain on fire when Carlos Correa, Jose Altuve, and George Springer return.
Trending Up: Brad Peacock
The bullpen has begun to take shape. With the acquisitions of Ryan Pressly, Roberto Osuna and also Hector Rondon starting to see more time, we forget about the original bullpen which was in shambles early on. Brad Peacock started off as AJ Hinch’s trusted arm in relief situations. Peacock has been trending up and down all season. In August, on the other hand, Peacock has found his groove again.
Peacock was called on three times and came in to pitch five total innings allowing zero runs on just two hits and carries a perfect 0.00 ERA through August lowering his season ERA to 2.84 after reaching 3.22 in July. In those five innings, he has fanned 11 batters and walked only two. Hitters are now just .198 against him. Right now is the time of year that Hinch is making mental notes as he shapes his bullpen for a postseason run. Peacock is making it known he wants to be in the discussion.