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Sunday, May 28, 2006

They Did It!

Astros 5, Pirates 4 - Final, 10 innings

I don't think I've been this excited about beating the Pirates in a really, really long time. After last night's fiasco and the blowout the night before, I figured we were headed for a sweep (which would've been the Pirates' first series sweep since 2004) after going into the ninth down by four runs.

The Astros have a way of doing this to all die hard fans, however. They're ratings geniuses. Why, you ask? Look at it this way... they force you to watch every out. Just when you're ready to turn it off, they show just enough life to keep you going. Today was no different. According to Preston Wilson's postgame interview (he's remarkably better spoken than I'd thought), the team decided to focus on having "good at-bats." This proved successful as the good guys rallied for a 4-run ninth inning to tie it and then an RBI single by Wilson in the tenth to eventually win it (Lidge completed his 13th save... after allowing the first runner on, but still).

Fernando Nieve pitched exceptionally well, again (I think that having a rookie go 6.2 innings and give up 4 ER is great... especially considering the four runs came off of two swings on mistakes). Overall, I've been thorougly pleased (even despite Buchholz's recent ups and downs) with our younger guys. To have your number five starter from last year and two rookies going out there and giving you a chance almost every time is phenomenal. Now we have to get back to being able to count on wins from Roy Harvey and Cletus, and our offense needs to carry this "good at-bat" strategy (genius, isn't it?) into their future series.

Congratulations, guys... well deserved. Let's just hope we can carry the momentum into our series with the Cardinals.

Last Note: My only regret about this afternoon's win is that they didn't plunk Jason Gay. I can't stand that Canadian showboat. The guy acts like every homerun he hits is his first, trotting around the bases like a sweet gazelle, and then coming out of the dugout to wave his helmet as if he'd just given his team the lead or tied the game in Game 7 of the Fall Classic. The Billy Hatchers of baseball can do that, Jason. NOT YOU.

BOO, BARRY BONDS... RETIRE NOW, CHEATER. If he'd done it without the aid of illegal drugs (and yes, I feel the same way about Mcgwire and Sosa), I'd be happy for him. If his attitude didn't SUCK, I'd be happy for him. But I'm sorry, Barry... you've done this to yourself.


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