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MLB Houston Astros

Houston Astros are Still in the Race for the AL West

justin maxwell astros

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Coming into this season there was a lot of excitement around the brand new Houston Astros team. Some of that was because of their new manager or the change to the new league. When the that badly either. Now two weeks into the season, the Astros find themselves on the cellar of the American League Western division but with a glimmer of hope.

One thing they have done very well since the first game of the season is strikeout. They lead the majors in K’s by twenty going into Jackie Robinson Day. Having said that, they have cut down on strikeouts lately and it shows. They put down over twenty runs in two games last week and appear to really be putting their bats on the baseball more effectively.

Starting pitching is a decent plus for the team. They haven’t gone crazy with shutouts but the guys have shown the ability to keep the Astros in the game. All they need now is for that offense to be steady and they could win the first six or seven innings of most games. The problem after that is the bullpen.

They rank 27th in bullpen ERA and 28th in bullpen WHIP. They are going to need better performance from the guys in the pen if anything good is going to come from the first AL season. Having said that, their pen is right alongside the Detroit Tigers’ pen and they certainly have potential to be as good if not better than the Tigers frazzled pen. As far as their record goes, they are not winning most of their games so far but neither are the Los Angeles Angels. They are actually tied for last only a few games out. If the Angels are not out of it, neither are the Astros.

David Miller is a Senior Writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @davidmillerrant, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google+.