Hey kids, guess what? The Astros scored a run last night. Actually, it was two runs. So, I guess all is well with the world.
What's that you're saying? The Giants scored four runs?
Well, Tim Lincecum got to the Astros again, pitching another gem for the Giants. Roy Oswalt didn't do a bad job, but when you've got the Astros offense, any pitching performance that allows more than one run in the game is a sure bet to lead to an Astros loss.
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And no, Jason, I'm not going to take your bait and go on the attack against Craig Biggio -- besides, as a caller to Charlie Pallilo's show reminded me yesterday, Craig Biggio is a Houston icon who has earned the right to bat lead-off until he gets his 3,000th hit. The team winning is secondary to satisfying the needs of the icon. But, since the Astros were on the road last night, and since Phil didn't have to deal with the people driving in from Huntsville and Madisonville just to see Biggio hit, he sat Biggio and put Mike Lamb in the lead-off spot. Not the call that I would've made, of course (I'd probably switched it up and had Loretta lead-off and Lamb bat second), but Lamb still got on base more than Biggio.
Luckily, the Brewers also lost night, so the Astros didn't lose anymore ground, but the team is still under .500, it's still tied with the Cubs for second (or third) place, and there's no sign that this club is going to be turning things around anytime soon.
Oh, and Brad Lidge is injured -- I bet you didn't see that coming.
Barry Zito pitches for the Giants tonight. And Zito hasn't been living up to his billing this season. However, Matt Albers is getting the start for The Good Guys, so this may be just the cure that Zito needs. -- John Royal