Astros: Key takeaways from opening series against Mariners

HOUSTON, TEXAS - JULY 26: Manager Dusty Baker #12 of the Houston Astros takes the ball from Zack Greinke #21 as he leaves the game in the fourth inning against the Seattle Mariners at Minute Maid Park on July 26, 2020 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TEXAS - JULY 26: Manager Dusty Baker #12 of the Houston Astros takes the ball from Zack Greinke #21 as he leaves the game in the fourth inning against the Seattle Mariners at Minute Maid Park on July 26, 2020 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images) /
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WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 25: Chris Devenski #47 of the Houston Astros delivers a pitch in the third inning against the Miami Marlins during a Grapefruit League spring training game at FITTEAM Ballpark of The Palm Beaches on February 25, 2020 in West Palm Beach, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 25: Chris Devenski #47 of the Houston Astros delivers a pitch in the third inning against the Miami Marlins during a Grapefruit League spring training game at FITTEAM Ballpark of The Palm Beaches on February 25, 2020 in West Palm Beach, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

Key Takeaways

First off, I’m so glad baseball is back. I cannot tell you how much I’ve missed it and I’m sure I’m not the only one in that boat.

Second, pitching continues to be a concern, especially with news that Devenski and Ryan Pressly are dealing with nagging injuries. Though I’m not so sure that this will hurt us in the long run, this could explain Devenski’s performance, or lack thereof, in his relief appearance in Saturday’s game.

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Third, we have some promising youngsters in the bullpen and we could all be very surprised at their ability to step in and step up.

Fourth, our offense is still super deep. Granted, the sample size is too small to be cocky, but it says a lot about your lineup when your number nine hitters, both catchers, start the year at third and fourth in team average and combine to have the most RBIs over any other position.

Fifth, while getting used to the management style of Dusty Baker is going to be a challenge for me (and I suspect it will for all of us armchair managers), I’m still excited to see 2020 play out. I am, however, a true believer that our boys are going to surprise us with their resilience and drive to be number one.

Sixth, we’re only four games into the season, but it’s promising that we’re in first place. And even though it looks like we’re tied with Oakland, our run differential of +13 and 29 runs scored screams volumes.

Seventh, the only thing that could make this season better would be if we could all fill up the seats at Minute Maid Park and eliminate the need for cardboard cutouts and piped in crowd sounds.

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