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How the Astros can get back on track after dropping 3 straight

How the Astros can get back on track after dropping 3 straight
No need to panic. Photo by Harry How/Getty Images.

After a 5-1 record to start the season, the Astros looked to continue their winning ways at home in front of their fans for the first time since Game 7 of the 2019 World Series against the Washington Nationals.

"It was a beautiful night," José Altuve said. "Kind of like a dream come true."

After receiving some harsh (yet sometimes funny) criticism from opposing fans to start the season, the Astros were welcomed back with open arms. Manager Dusty Baker said the crowd had an effect on the game as well.

"It made a big difference," manager Dusty Baker said. "I could see the positive energy on our team."

The Astros won their home opener 6-2 behind a good start from Cristian Javier (1-0) who threw 5 scoreless innings and gave up three hits with seven strikeouts.

Houston also received some production from their bats as Carlos Correa, Yordan Alvarez and Atluve all homered to help the Astros increase their record to 6-1 to start the season.

The Astros outscored their opponents 52-19 their first seven games of the season and Michael Brantley led the team with a .538 batting average. The Astros top 6 hitters were all batting over .300 during this 6-1 stretch.

This would unfortunately be the peak of their young season. After their home opener, the Astros would go on to lose their next three games. (Two losses to the A's and one loss to the Tigers).

How the Astros can get back on track

The Astros were outscored 19-7 during this losing streak and left a total of 22 runners on base.

Pitchers Jose Urquidy and Zack Greinke combined to give up 11 runs in back-to-back starts. This in addition to their inability to drive in runs consistently is what ultimately lead to their current 3-game losing streak.

The Astros currently sit at 6-4 and are in second place behind the Los Angeles Angels (7-4) in the American League West.

A three-game losing streak only 10 games into the 2021 season is hardly a cause for concern as the Astros still have one of the most potent offenses in the league and have the pitching to compete with any team in the big leagues.

ONE THING TO NOTE: This was AJ Hinch's first game since getting let go from the Astros in early 2020. The former Astros' manager received a video tribute prior to Monday's game against the Tigers, and got a standing ovation when his name was announced as the Tigers' manager.

"This place is very special to me," Hinch said. "It's the only time I've ever been uncomfortable in this setting, in this building. I really do appreciate it. It touched me. I wanted to get out and tip my cap and then get back in before I showed too much emotion."

UP NEXT: Jake Odorizzi will make his season debut when the series continues Tuesday night after signing with the Astros on March 8th. He will be facing left-hander Matthew Boyd as the Astros look to even the series against the Tigers.

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Something has to change. Composite Getty Image.

Coming into the season, one of the areas of the club the Astros were hoping would improve was the play at first base. Jose Abreu finished the 2023 regular season with the ninth-worst OPS in baseball among qualified players.

However, he did play well in the postseason. So fans were holding out hope we would see that version of Abreu in 2024.

Unfortunately, Abreu has done little to make people believe he'll be any better this season.

And the Astros appear to be in denial about the reality of the situation with this continued nonsense about the back of his baseball card. Manager Joe Espada brought this up once again after the Astros were swept by the Braves.

If we're going to keep talking about baseball cards, then we have to accept this. The back of his card also shows how bad he was in 2023, and his age.

To be clear, we don't have any issue with the Astros having their player's backs. But this baseball card stuff has to stop. It's insulting to the fans. There are other ways to discuss a slumping player.

Be sure to watch the video above as ESPN Houston's John Granato and Lance Zierlein react to the Abreu situation.

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