Analyze This, That and the Other Thing!

You know what. Screw my psychologist. Sometimes, there's just nothing positive upon which to dwell.

The Astros lost, again, to the Pirates, again. The final of this sixth loss in a row, and sixth straight loss to Pittsburgh, was 5-3. The Astros scored 2 runs in the top of the ninth, and loaded the bases, only to have Adam Everett pull off one of his familiar ground outs to end the game.

The Astros had 10 hits, but left 13 runners on base. Carlos Lee went 0 for 4, and stranded 6 base runners. Everett went 0 for 4, and stranded 6 base runners. Brad Ausmus was 0 for 3, and he stranded 5 base runners.

Wandy Rodriguez was adequate. He went 7 innings, surrendering only 3 runs. Chad Qualls went 2/3rds of an inning, and surrendered the other two runs.

Perhaps the Astros should be reconsidering this whole Craig Biggio thing. Chris Burke was the lead-off batter and reached base twice, scoring two runs. Mark Loretta, who got the start instead of Biggio, was 4 for 4 with 1 run scored and a stolen base while batting second. Lance Berkman woke up today and had 2 hits and an RBI. That's what you want happening at the top of the lineup, and it's something that hasn't been happening too much lately with Biggio leading off the game. Also, it should be noted that Mike Lamb, starting for Morgan Ensberg, was 3 for 5 with 1 RBI -- a big change over Ensberg who, last night, was 0 for 7 with a walk.

The Astros are returning to Minute Maid Park for a three game series with the Milwaukee Brewers, who took 2 of 3 games from the Astros last weekend. The Astros starters for the series are scheduled to be Roy Oswalt on Friday, Chris Sampson on Saturday, and Woody Williams on Sunday. – John Royal

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