The week begins today for the San Francisco Giants and Houston Astros, as they meet in an interleague series in Houston. The Astros have been started to resemble the Astros lately. They head into Tuesday with wins in four of their last five games and are 7-3 in the last ten. The Astros must keep winning, because they are going to need to keep pace with the Yankees who are burning a trail across the majors.
When the Yanks started the year off at 8-8, I said not too panic, they will eventually make a run at the Red Sox and overtake them. It happened sooner than I thought, but the start the Red Sox had was a bit too much. They were winning at a pace that was not realistic for their talent level. Okay, the Vegas Golden Knights are a team that are the exception, but the Red Sox were not going to maintain it. The Yankees, though, their play is more indicative of how they were playing to open the year. Yeah, they will hit ruts, but the record is going to look mighty fine come September.
The moral of the story for the Astros is that I don’t believe it’s going to be as easy as last season. The Yankees were not this good a year ago. Giancarlo Stanton was wasting time for the Miami Marlins when the Astros were plowing through the competition. With a heavy bat like his, it changes a whole lot. The pitching has been outstanding for the Astros, though. It’s the kind of pitching that could throw the Yankees for a whirl in the postseason. That’s what wins World Series, so we’ll see how it goes. Head below for our free Giants vs. Astros pick in interleague play on Tuesday.
San Francisco Giants vs. Houston Astros Pick
Andrew Suarez (1-3, 4.88 ERA) vs. Gerrit Cole (4-1, 1.75 ERA)
Gerrit Cole came over to the Astros in the offseason and so far so good. It appears that the ‘Stros made a good choice in bringing him on board. They aren’t paying him an insane amount of money, so they are getting a bargain with Cole. Cole used to be a fixture in the Pirates’ rotation. He was a reliable member of the Pirates since 2013. In part of a rebuilding year, the Pirates failed to resign him after he posted a 4.26 ERA in 2017. He took a shot at management of the Pirates, it wasn’t a good divorce between the two, so perhaps he is using it as motivated with the Astros. Whatever he’s doing is working, Cole holds a 1.75 ERA and 0.79 WHIP. In his last three outings, he has been solid with a 1.80 ERA and 0.80 WHIP. Overall, as a team, the pitching staff has allowed an average of only 1.5 runs per game.
Suarez comes in for the Giants with an ERA of 4.88. He’s made five starts this year with three of them resulting in not so good results, and the other two were quality outings. I don’t know if it’s nerves with him on the road, but he is putting way too many on base in the road setting. At home he has posted a WHIP and OBA of 0.98 and .257. On the road that balloons to 1.82 and .405. He is extremely lucky his ERA on the road of 4.82 is not higher. Suarez is playing with fire and it will likely catch up to him eventually. There will be growing pains for a rookie, though. I think today is going to be a day he will be facing some pain. The Astros should be able to win comfortable on Tuesday night against this National League foe.