Yes, a two-game series is still a series, and because of this, the Houston Astros have pulled off their first series sweep of the 2013 season.
Even though Thursday was their fourth game against the Colorado Rockies in a row, they were technically two separate series. The main reason the Astros split the first two-game set was because of the starting pitching, and even though the starting pitching was good in the second set, there were other reasons why the team was able to pull off the sweep.
While Erik Bedard and Lucas Harrell pitched well enough to help propel the Astros to two wins, the bullpen played a major role in this two-game set.
When Bedard and Harrell were working in and out of trouble, the bullpen held the games together and really gave the Astros a chance to win. Hector Ambriz notched his first save in Harrell’s win on Wednesday thanks to Astros manager Bo Porter giving Jose Veras the night off. Not to mention, Brad Peacock pitched for the first time since being recalled from Triple-A Oklahoma City, and he looked really good.
Another big part of this series sweep was the offense coming through when needed. In Wednesday’s game, the Astros scored six runs, with three coming in the eighth which all but locked up that night’s win.
On Thursday, the team hit back-to-back home runs, including a three-run shot from Chris Carter that gave them a 6-3 lead. J.D. Martinez, who is coming into his own, had his first career four-hit night, while the hot Jason Castro kept hitting and racked up two doubles and two walks.
If the Astros can keep their starting pitchers on a roll like this and the offense can continue to show up, the Astros will be able to compete on a regular basis.