Take That, Cardinals!

Okay, kids, Roy Oswalt played the role of the ace stopper last night. And he did it perfectly. The Astros won the game over the Reds 3-1. Oswalt pitched eight innings, throwing only 95 pitches, 74 of which were for strikes.

Phil Garner moved Hunter Pence up to the second spot in the order, and Pence responded in the first inning with an RBI triple that scored Craig Biggio.

Now, even with good news, I’ve got some complaints.

Can someone please explain to me why Luke Scott is still in the lineup? Can someone explain to me why Luke Scott is still on the major league roster? At least Garner moved him down to the sixth spot in the order, but seeing as how Oswalt had a double and two sacrifices, maybe Scott should be batting ninth and Oswalt should be batting sixth.

Garner had Mark Loretta at third base tonight, after starting Mike Lamb at third base last night. Can I take this to mean that Garner’s finally gotten the hint about Morgan Ensberg? If so, what’s it going to take for Garner to get the hint about Luke Scott? The lineup would be better if Loretta and Lamb were starting every night and Scott was sitting on the bench with Ensberg.

And one final thing: Why did Garner remove Oswalt from the game? Oswalt was cruising. He should’ve been left to complete the game. I know, Garner will probably say that his closer, Dan Wheeler, needed the work. But seeing as how Wandy Rodriguez is starting tonight, couldn’t Garner just get him the work then?

Also, Brad Ausmus got on base to start the bottom of the eighth inning. Garner removed Oswalt and sent Morgan Ensberg up to bat. And Ensberg goes about attempting to sacrifice Ausmus over to second base. What’s the use of wasting a pinch hitter on a sacrifice, especially since Oswalt’s already put down two sacrifice bunts?

Oh well. Did I mention the Astros won the game 3-1? That Oswalt pitched an excellent game. That Hunter Pence might actually be the real thing.

Wandy Rodriguez gets the start tonight as the Astros attempt to take the series from the Reds. The Astros are now 1-1 for May and 11-15 for the season. And the team’s passed the Cards and moved into fifth place. – John Royal

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