Astros drop game three of series

Astros daily report: Rays 3, Astros 1

Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

A quick recap of Saturday's Astros game against the Rays:

Final Score: Rays 3, Astros 1

Record: 1-2, third in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Tyler Glasnow (1-0).

Losing pitcher: Collin McHugh (0-1).

Star of the game: Collin McHugh made it two straight nights where a starter did a great job but didn't have the offense behind them to earn a win. McHugh was only able to go five innings, but his pitches had great movement to them, allowing him to rack up nine strikeouts to go with his two earned runs on just three hits and one walk.

Notes: Alex Bregman put Houston on the board early with a solo home run in the top of the first, giving Collin McHugh a lead to work with when he took the mound for his return to the starting rotation. He looked fantastic through the first four innings, allowing just one baserunner on a walk in the bottom of the fourth, then faltered in the fifth to let the Rays take a 2-1 lead. Will Harris made his 2019 debut with a scoreless sixth, as did Chris Devenski who threw a hitless seventh before returning in the eighth to allow a run on three hits to extend the Rays lead to 3-1. The Astros managed to load the bases with two outs in the eighth, but couldn't convert, and came up empty in the ninth as well. The Astros fall to 1-2 on the season.

Up next: The Astros will wrap up the season-opening series with the Rays tomorrow afternoon at 12:10 PM. We'll get our first look at Wade Miley on the mound for Houston, while Tampa Bay is expected to go to their tactic of having a bullpen day every few days.

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The Texans have a big decision to make. Composite image by Jack Brame

The last few weeks have brought us some very interesting episodes of "As Kirby Turns." Cal McNair has admitted he hasn't spoken with Deshaun Watson and has also doubled down on his affinity for Jack Easterby by saying he's staying around. The franchise's only member of their Ring of Honor, Andre Johnson, came completely out of character by tweeting his support for Watson to "stand his ground" in what most assume is his desire to play elsewhere. Newly hired general manager Nick Caserio has the hardest job in the NFL because he's basically a one leg man in a bleep kicking contest. National and local media are all floating rumors and opinions about Watson's status with the team. Meanwhile, Watson himself has been cryptic and hasn't come out and said one thing either way about his status with the team.

My opinion is that he won't be traded and this is his way of using the leverage he has to get some things done his way to ensure more of his career won't be wasted. Once they hire a head coach he approves of and they talk, he'll be back in the fold and blow things over by saying he never demanded a trade and was only upset about some things due to miscommunication. Blah blah blah. However, where there's smoke, there must be fire. I'll examine some pros and cons to a potential trade of Watson.

Bad news first. This franchise has waited its entire existence for a franchise quarterback like Watson. Finally getting one and having to deal him amidst the bumbling owner and charlatan right-hand man would be a big blow to overcome. This coming year is shaping up to be difficult as it is, but doing so with Watson wearing a different jersey could prove to be a near fatal blow. It would take an additional year or so to recover. The only way this timeline is expedited, is if they get a quarterback back in the trade or with one of the draft picks that they feel can be the man moving forward.

The bright side. Watson is this team's most attractive asset as it looks to rebuild. There are teams in the top five of this year's draft who need quarterbacks, and a couple of them have multiple first round picks. The Jets, #2 and #23 overall in the first round this draft, are the most intriguing destination because they may be bad next season with Watson if you get that pick in the trade as well. Throw in Sam Darnold, who's still young and salvageable, and this could be a hard reset that may not take as long. The Dolphins, #3 and #18 overall this draft, also have a lot to offer. Rumor has it Watson would like to go to Miami in a deal that includes Tua Tagovailoa, who was a guy Caserio liked when entering the draft. Again, another potential hard reset that may not take long if either young quarterback pans out. You could also trade back from those top slots to acquire more picks to help fill some of the many holes you have.

I reiterate, I do not believe Watson will be traded. I'm not even sure his no trade clause is applicable since he's still under his rookie contract and his extension hasn't kicked in yet. The new CBA rules call for stiffer penalties for players who refuse to report, so a holdout is highly unlikely. I'll be glad when they hire a coach Watson likes, and we get the happy family press conference introducing him, so this soap opera can move on to its next episode.

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