Houston Chronicle’s wild take after Yanks sweep makes Blanco’s no-hitter even better

Ronel Blanco and the Astros reminded everyone that they are still a bonafide contender on Monday evening.

Toronto Blue Jays v Houston Astros
Toronto Blue Jays v Houston Astros / Logan Riely/GettyImages

When a team struggles right out of the gate like the Houston Astros did, it invites some truly terrible takes. Fans start calling for a complete roster teardown and the media starts speculating wildly about guys' jobs despite the fact that this is largely the same group of players that just barely missed going to yet another World Series in 2023.

Unfortunately, the sports world has a very short memory and an 0-4 start is just going to inevitably cause panic.

Case in point: the Houston Chronicle decided to put together a look at the last 0-4 Astros team back in 2011. While a novel and relevant concept for a piece on the surface, comparing this Astros team to a team that finished 56-106 and whose staff ace was Wandy Rodriguez never made much sense. Looking back at history is fine, but unwarranted fear-mongering seems to be a bit much.

And it made the no-hitter than Ronel Blanco just threw on Monday night all the sweeter.

Write off the Astros in 2024 at your own peril

To be clear, this isn't just a Houston Chronicle problem. While they have certainly been among the more prominent panic-pushers from the Astros slow start, everyone reacted in shock to Houston getting swept by the Yankees in the first series and struggled to understand how it could have happened given the expectations on Houston coming in.

Sometimes, dumb stuff happens in close games, and a lot of dumb stuff happened to the Astros in that series. With Blanco throwing a no-hitter and the Astros' offense going off on Monday night, it put the media and the rest of the league on notice: the Astros are far from dead. Most of these guys have been a part of seven straight ALCS appearances, so invoking the ghosts of 2011 after four games is pretty disrespectful when you take a step back and look at it.

Will Houston make another deep postseason run this year? It is way too early to say. However, they just showed that they are just as talented as they were last year, and anyone that is already spiraling into worst-case scenario land because of a few games in March does so at their own peril.

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