In Wake Of Failure, Houston Astros' Youngsters Losing No Confidence

By Josh Sippie
Thomas Campbell – USA TODAY Sports

It’s been a concern from the get-go: with all this young Houston Astros talent hoping to build experience, how will they react to losing day-in and day-out?

Well, they’ve responded phenomenally. For example, Brett Oberholtzer and Jarred Cosart are still brimming with confidence.

It’s easy to see that the only players performing consistently are those guys that were recently called up. Jonathan Villar is hitting a stout .278, whether he be hitting ninth or filling in at the lead off spot for the injured Robbie Grossman. Thus far in September, he’s hitting .350.

It’s safe to say Villar is taking kindly to being made the everyday shortstop, and even after being benched mid-game for a baserunning blunder, he’s still leaving it all on the field. Grossman has been similarly good, with no signs of letting up. Despite being out for the past four days with an oblique strain, Grossman is hitting .322 with four home runs and 20 RBIs since his latest call-up.

And then there’s the pitchers.

Cosart has, believe it or not, taken a back seat to fellow starter Oberholtzer, who has been unstoppable. After pitching a complete game shutout in his previous start, Oberholtzer came out in Saturday’s game against he Oakland Athletics and threw six innings of one-run ball. But in typical Astros fashion, he left the game still on the hook for the for the loss.

Since being made a starter, Oberholtzer is an outstanding 4-1 with a 1.98 ERA, with only seven walks in 41 innings. There are no signs of confidence loss here.

Cosart has continued his stellar debut season. Despite going only 1-1, his 2.13 ERA is second only to Oberholtzer. He continues to show why he was such a highly-rated prospect, and all signs point to him being the ace for years to come.

Then there is Brad Peacock, who had a terrible start  to the season. Peacock has rebounded masterfully, going 3-2 with a 3.68 ERA and a whopping 38 strikeouts in just 36.2 innings. If anything, he has gained confidence.

Everyone who has said that the Astros’ current state will damage the growth of their young stars is clearly horribly wrong.

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