The team leading the AL in runs scored decided to change their approach, and on Tuesday night, they recorded 15 runs in a battle of the bats with the low-scoring Astros.
Manager Bo Porter chose to leave designated hitter Chris Carter out of the lineup and without their leading RBI man, one might assume that the idea was to play small, defend well and replicate the previous night’s performance. Instead, the Astros put up 10 runs of their own on 11 hits. It was the most runs scored by the Houston club this season that did not lead to a win.
Pitching was just as responsible for the score as the big bats were, and after a night of exemplary command on Monday, the wheels came off for the Astros’ bullpen in game two of the home series. Jordan Lyles started the game and though he had a 5-0 lead after two innings, he faltered. He relied far too heavily on his fastball, as did the relief staff; and for a team that hits as effectively as the Red Sox, this was a big error of judgment.
This was one of the Astros’ best offensive outputs of the season, but when they allow Boston to have back-to-back five-run innings, it ends up meaning very little.
The rubber match of the three-game series on Wednesday night sees rookie ace Jarred Cosart take the mound for the Astros. The youngster boasts a 0.96 ERA through his first four games, and with the series tied at one apiece, hopefully he can right the ship back to defensive composure and intelligent baseball.