Back to life
You will all remember how bad it was for Wandy Rodriguez in his past start last weekend. It was painful to watch, and wasn’t suitable enough for a good memory. Back then, Rodriguez vowed himself to do everything possible to leave it all behind and concentrate in his next start.
And he did it. After an embarrassing shutout in the hands of Carlos Zambrano and the Chicago Cubs last night, the Astros and his young starter handed over a dose from a very similar medicine to the baby bears. Rodriguez tossed seven solid innings in which the Cubs weren’t able to score; until an RBI double by John Mabry broke the spell, under the responsibility of Brad Lidge in the ninth.
The game finished with a 4-1 final; and this was a totally different Astros team. They gave us a different vibe; and those who saw this contest will agree with me. Maybe Lisa will say last night was the moment in which they hit rock bottom, and there isn’t any other way to go but up.
Wandy was sensational, leaving all the ghosts of his last outing behind: seven shutout innings, granting five hits and striking one out. Chad Qualls did his job, with an inning in zero.
Sure enough, the ‘Stros scored few runs, but they were enough thanks to the good work from the pitching staff. Preston Wilson took advantage of an error by Cubs starter Kerry Wood in order to score Houston’s first run in the second frame. Wilson went 3-for-4 tonight.
Putting things in perspective, and trying to avoid excessive optimism, things are not as scary as we might believe at first. It’s true Roy Oswalt is on the DL, but it’s very probably his time there will be short. The "kiddie corps" (thank you again, Lisa) have done a good job so far and, as Wandy proved us tonight, they can bounce back from a bad time. And when it comes to the offense, we’re starting to see them scrapping in every at bat. They were efficient on the plate, squeezing out each and every turn.
It’s true what Roger Clemens said. They have what it takes. They just have to prove it more often.