Astros extend winning streak to 8 games

Astros daily report presented by APG&E: 3 hits from the 5-1 win

Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

The Astros took the field Wednesday night looking to complete a three-game sweep against the Detroit Tigers. Houston capitalized on a strong start from their ace with big contributions at the plate from their bench.

Final Score: Astros 5, Tigers 1

Record: 29-15, first in the AL West.

Winning pitcher: Justin Verlander (7-1, 2.38 ERA)

Losing pitcher: Gregory Soto (0-2, 13.50 ERA)

1. Verlander tosses gem in familiar territory

Justin Verlander's second ever start against his old team was the storyline going into this series and when the 36 year old was handed the ball to complete the sweep, he didn't disappoint. Verlander fired 7 innings of 2-hit baseball, surrendering one homerun while striking out 9. Verlander shows no signs of slowing down as he ranks first in the AL in record (7-1), WHIP (0.79), and second in strikeouts (77).

2. Jakeday delivers

The hallmark of this season's roster and their current streak is the ability to pick up each other's slack when someone has an off night. Tonight was no different, and while Alex Bregman and Carlos Correa each had their typically large contributions, George Springer turned in an 0-5 night. The effects were hardly felt, however, as Jake Marisnick went 2-3 with a single, a triple and two RBIs. He batted ninth.

3. Still Streaking

Since their embarrassing 2-12 defeat last Tuesday against the struggling Kansas City Royals (the one that included two grand slams and a Tyler White relief pitching appearance), the Astros have been white hot. With the win Wednesday night, the Astros have swept two teams in a row, and are riding an eight-game win streak heading into this weekend's series against Boston. The Astros are averaging an unreal 8.25 runs per game during this stretch, while holding their opponents to just 4.25. That number looks a lot better when you consider the fact that the runs being scored are typically against lower tier relievers that are only seeing action because the score is so out of hand.

Up Next: Houston will have a day off tomorrow before kicking off a three game series at Boston on Friday at 6:10. Gerrit Cole (4-4, 3.88 ERA) will face Rick Porcello (3-3, 5.15 ERA).

The Astros daily report is presented by APG&E.

Bregman's great year not enough to overtake the best in the sport

Mike Trout wins 2019 AL MVP over Alex Bregman

Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

After a close race, the MLB announced on Thursday that the winner of the American League Most Valuable Player Award is Los Angeles' Mike Trout. He edges out Alex Bregman, who many thought might be able to capitalize on missed time by Trout in 2019 to steal the award. Trout takes the award for the third time in his career, joining a list of only ten other players in history to win it three or more times.

Missed time not enough for Bregman to steal it

What some may have thought would put Bregman over Trout in the mind of voters is the sustained success he had in a complete season. Trout missed 28 games this season mostly due to injury, while Bregman played in 156 of the teams 162 games, sitting out just a handful of games with minor injuries or scheduled rest.

Still, Trout managed to put up incredible numbers that Bregman couldn't quite match. Trout led the entire league in WAR at 8.6 with Bregman right behind in 8.5. He also led the MLB in walk percentage (18.3%), on-base percentage (.438), and was second in OPS (1.083), which was best in the AL. Trout was second in the AL in home runs (45), sixth in runs (110), and ninth in RBIs (104) despite his missed time.

Still a terrific season for Bregman

Bregman finished with 41 home runs (3rd in the AL), 122 runs (4th), 112 RBIs (5th) while leading the entire league in walks (119) to put him third in walk percentage (17.2%). The walks helped boost his on-base percentage and OPS, finishing second to Trout in both categories in the AL at .423 and 1.015, respectively. Bregman did finish with a better batting average, posting a .296 to Trout's .291.

One of his most impressive stretches, though, came in his hot August, which earned him a player of the month honor. That month, he drove in 31 runs while hitting six home runs and fourteen doubles, working his way up to a 1.235 OPS over the 26 games he played.

2019 was by far Bregman's best performance in his early career and shows that the future is bright for the young third baseman who the Astros currently have tied up for the next five seasons. Though Mike Trout will likely still be the favorite for MVP for many years to come, Bregman showed this year that he could give him an honest fight for the award.

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