|The Astros' new fifth starter, 23-year-old Rule 5 pick Aneury Rodriguez|
Brett Wallace being day-to-day with a mild hip contusion has forced Brad Mills to shuffle the cards. Sanchez is in playing second base and bats third tonight with Bourgeois in left field batting second and Carlos Lee fifth at first base. Clint Barmes, starting his second game of the season bats eighth behind J.R. Towles.
Mills has said he could have Wallace back today, but since tomorrow's game is a day-game, he thought it made sense to give him tonight off.
Before Angel Sanchez sat out the 2007 season he was a base-stealing threat, but his speed seems to have evaporated and he looks rather cumbersome running around the bases. Still, Michael Bourn and Jason Bourgeois together in the lineup should provide the Brewers with some problems IF they can get on base.
As much as something needed to be done, I'm not entirely thrilled with the first move. It might end up working well, and Rodriguez might step up to the plate, but it seems too soon to be throwing him into the fire. Hopefully this announcement has sent Brad Arnsberg into a work frenzy to get a gameplan together in three days.
Meanwhile Wandy Rodriguez will try and stop Randy Wolf from scalping the Astros twice in a week. But look out, Braun, McGehee, Corey Hart and Ricky Weeks all rake against the crafty lefty.
Wolf has had a tidy couple of years since his brief stint with the Astros back in 2008. He had 34 starts in each of the last two seasons, easily topping 200 innings pitched, for modest salaries of $5m and $8m. His current 3-year just under $30m deal with the Brewers might be a little excessive, but early returns from his first five starts of the season look very good.
Meanwhile a few Phillies commentators have been kicking up the idea of a trade for Hunter Pence. Here is a quick sketch of my thoughts on the subject.
Jordan Lyles threw six-shutout innings last night, and Jose Altuve raised his BA to .455, going a triple short of the cycle.
Meanwhile Jeff Sullivan looks at how much the Astros' infield defense sucks, as the pitching staff has a ridiculous .310 batting average against on groundballs. Sigh.