Another game, another big win. This has been the Houston Astros‘ M.O. since starting a recent road trip, and while dropping 12 runs to the Detroit Tigers’ three, all things were clicking for the orange team. From Luis Garcia’s quality start to Michael Brantley robbing a home run, the win streak extended to 11 games.
Jose Altuve took the day off on Thursday, while Myles Straw lead off. While Altuve is hitting at one of his best lines of his career, he could possibly drop to third in the lineup, where he is more accustomed to. Straw was thought of as a possible option to lead off opening the season, but you want your best hitters having the most at-bats per game.
Manager Dusty Baker tends to vary on which strategy he will take. Sometimes he will have Carlos Correa high in the order, and then other times, he fills Chas McCormick in at the top or Straw at lead off.
With Myles Straw leading of, could we see more of this lineup?
The Astros did play the Tigers; one of the worst teams in the American League. But with Straw going 4-for-6 with three runs, this could be more common with Alex Bregman out of the lineup. It is one game against a rebuilding team, but Straw has been boosting his offensive production over the past month.
If Straw were to lead off more often, you’re playing with fire with the question of him continuing to get on base or not. With six possible All-Stars already in the lineup, the question of leading off Straw more often would have to do with why give him more opportunities? The Astros are in a 20-game stretch against weaker competition, and with Bregman out, why not test this out more often?
More from Climbing Tal's Hill
- Just how much better is the Houston Astros playoff rotation than the rest?
- Houston Astros: A Lineup Change to Spark Offense
- Astros prospect Hunter Brown throws 6 shutout innings in debut
- Always faithful Astros World Series champion Josh Reddick defends the title
- Michael Conforto declines Astros’ 2-year, $30 million offer
This is all a theory, but Baker has made questionable lineup moves this season. He is plainly trying out new things during a win streak. Here is what a lineup could look like with Straw leading off:
Michael Brantley (L)
Yordan Alvarez (L)
Kyle Tucker (L)
Abraham Toro (S)
It is a good issue to have, even with Bregman on the injured list. Players will take days off during this stretch; Baker has spoken on this not being the days of Lou Gehrig anymore, so there are different routes to test the water.
The Astros are back on the field on Friday at 6:10 p.m. with Framber Valdez off the rubber against right-hander Wily Peralta.