Ho. Lee. Cow.
That was face meltingly awesome.
And I’m not talking about Claudio Vargas‘ mediocre start. I’m talking about that 9-run 6th inning that I just witnessed at Miller Park.
I have to admit that my heart sank as soon as Vargas walked Lance Berkman (who let go of his bat again tonight after doing it several times last night) after getting ahead 0-2 in the count. Carlos Lee then jacked the third Astros homer of the night to give Houston a 4-2 lead.
Then, the deluge began. Hall and Estrada walked to lead off the bottom of the sixth. Kevin Mench then singled to left. Billy Hall probably could have scored on the play, even without El Caballo booting the ball, but Levya held him. No reason to make a stupid out down by two with no one out, Rickie Weeks on deck, and everyone available to pinch hit for Matt Wise after that.
Weeks singled to right and it would have scored one run and left the bases loaded with no outs for pinch-hitter Tony Graffanino, but Astros “right fielder” Luke Scott let the ball get past him to the wall, scoring Estrada and Mench with Weeks landing at third, still with no outs.
Enter Graffy. I hate to say it, but he’s been kinda hot lately. First pitch from new pitcher Rick White (not at all a misnomer, by the way) is hit deep to left center, and eventually hits off the top of the wall for a homer. Wow. Hunter Pence (aka the skinniest man alive) could only watch.
Corey Hart struck out. But then J.J. Hardy walked (which he did twice in the game — kudos to Fish Chicken), and Ryan Braun doubled (he’s officially a beast — not a human), and Phil Garner gives an IBB to Fielder to load the bases for Hall, who strikes out to bring up Johnny Estrada.
Johnny swings feebly at the first two offerings from White, and I start thinking White’s going to let his guard down throw a meat pitch and that Johnny better be looking for it. Sure enough, 2 seconds later the ball’s landing in the right-center field deck for a grand slam, Johnny’s first ever. Wow.
Kevin Mench, who has become just a horrible hitter and continues to threaten his own livelihood (scroll down to the “Part Time Slugger” portion). He grounded out to end the inning.
Most other things in the game pale in comparison to that inning. Couple of notes though:
Braun was 3-4 with a 2-run homer, two doubles that were absolutely smoked, walked, stole a base, and continues to show that he’s the real deal. Seriously, it’s a joyous thing to look at that infield: Fielder, Weeks, Hardy, and Braun. Wow.
Corey Hart ain’t to shabby himself. He had two hits and a walk tonight and his OPS is right around 1.000.
Rickie Weeks’ OBP is a full 100 points above his AVG. Now, if he could just raise his average above .250. If he gets it up to .275, .280, we’ve got a hell of a player at 2B. It should happen.
Ned Yost‘s lineup was pretty much perfect tonight. For once.
All the Astros’ runs came on homers. Luke Scott went yard twice. For some reason (that reason is Claudio Vargas), so did Brad friggin’ Ausmus.
Jose Capellan stinks. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if he gets sent down when Cappie is ready to return.
If this comment is from the real Doug Melvin, I can’t wait for July. What else could this mean but a trade of significance. One of our pitchers? Kevin Mench? I might speculate in a later post.
What a great time. Best of luck to Dave Bush in tomorrow’s series finale.
Ho. Lee. Cow.