Aug 25, 2015; Bronx, NY, USA; Houston Astros center fielder Carlos Gomez (30) watches his three run home run in the seventh inning against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
(American League team that is struggling)
Houston Astros: While the Astros are still clinging to their division lead, the Rangers are charging fast. Texas has narrowed the lead to one game, but they are actually tied in the loss column. Houston has lost 6 of their last 10 games and 3 of their last 4 series. The Astros kicked off their current road trip by dropping the first two games against the lowly A’s and they still have to go through the Angels and Rangers before they get back home.
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Houston charged out to surprising start this season behind an offense and pitching staff that ranked 4th in runs scored and ERA respectively in the first half of the season. The pitching has still been great since the break, but the offense has dwindled to 10th in the league in the second half.
Carlos Gomez was supposed to be the big addition to their lineup, but he has hit only .231/.273/.336 for the Astros. If Wilmer Flores was brought to tears when he thought the Mets had traded him for Gomez, Houston’s front office must be bawling their eyes out over completing a trade that has thus far backfired.
It’s not just Gomez that has been a disappointment. George Springer only recently returned after missing two months with a fractured wrist, but has yet to find his swing. Chris Carter is hitting a putrid .164 over his last 29 games. A low batting average is nothing new for Carter, but he hasn’t made up for it with the power we are used to seeing, having recorded only 3 home runs and a pair of doubles since the break. Evan Gattis is second on the team since the break with 7 homers and 19 RBI, but he has a .295 OBP during that span.
The Astros are fading late in the game. Not only are the Rangers nipping at their heels, but if they slide too far over the next few weeks then they may be in danger of having their spot in the postseason stolen from them.
Next: Playoff Outlook