The Astros had an eventful day yesterday on and off the field. The All-Star starters were named, the pitching gets hit hard, and Alvarez is pulled early.
Let’s get the bad news out of the way first. Once again the Astros‘ pitchers got knocked around pretty good yesterday in their 10-0 loss to the Pirates. To make matters worse, rookie slugger Yordan Alvarez was removed early in the game due to that all too familiar word “discomfort”.
For the second game in a row, the starting pitcher for Houston was pulled after just three innings of work. Brad Peacock seemed to have trouble locating and getting a feel for his pitches from the very beginning. Pittsburgh’s leadoff hitter knocked one over the wall and that set the tone for the day.
Peacock gave up six runs on seven hits, including three home runs, ending his day after the third. Cy Sneed came in making his Major League debut and finished out the game going six innings, giving the bullpen a much-needed rest. He allowed four runs, seven hits, and two homers in his introduction to the Big Leagues.
On another sad note, Alvarez was pulled from the game after three innings. He felt discomfort in his left knee while chasing down a fly ball, the same knee he fouled a ball off in a prior game. He said he could have kept playing, but with the game already 6-0, A.J. Hinch felt it would be safer for him to rest the knee. He’s considered day-to-day and should just miss a game or two.
"“It started barking a little bit, and he said he could have continued to play, but you saw how the game was going,” Hinch said. “I took him out of the game as a precaution. I don’t know if I play him [Friday]. We’ll give him a day or two.” via Brian McTaggart of MLB.com."
Now to the good news! The Astros will make up one-third of the American League All-Star Team’s starting batting order. Alex Bregman, George Springer, and Michael Brantley were all elected as starters in their respective positions.
Bregman garnered almost half of all votes, winning out as the starting third baseman. This will be his second All-Star appearance and his first as a starter. If you’ll remember he was the MVP of last year’s summer classic after hitting a homer in the tenth to break the tie.
Springer and Brantley took second and third in the voting for outfielders, behind Mike Trout. This is Springer’s third time as an All-Star and his second as a starter. Last season, as a reserve, he followed up Bregman with those back-to-back home runs to win it for the AL. This will be Brantley’s fourth appearance and first as a starter.
Robinson Chirinos and Carlos Correa each came in third on the ballot for their positions, while Jose Altuve got the second most votes among second basemen. There is still a chance any one of those players could still make the team as a reserve, as well an Astro pitcher or two. That will be determined by a players ballot and the Commissioner’s Office.