It’s almost impossible to mention the Houston Astros these days without someone bringing up their infamous cheating scandal where it was brought to light that they were “stealing signs” which for those unaware sign stealing is the observing and relaying, through legal and illegal methods, of the signs being given by the opposing catcher to the pitcher or a coach to a base runner. The signs are stolen by the opposing team and then relayed to the other members of the team to give advance knowledge of what kind of pitch is coming next, thereby giving that batter an advantage.
However it appears as though the Astros have cleaned up their act and are looking on course to qualify for the World Series this season. As things stand they currently sit top of the American League West division with 90 wins and 61 losses, at the time of writing 8-2 through their last 10 games, the only team with better stats than them in the American League are the Tampa Bay Rays. Pretty impressive. So! Today we’re going to be taking a look at what it has taken for the Astros to get to where they are right now.
The Astros 2021 season so far
If we take a look at the tale of the tape, it’s fair to see that statistically the Astros are one of the best teams in the entire league right now and it’s clear why they’re one of the top MLB picks when it comes to betting this season. With only 4 teams realistically out performing them. Those teams being the Rays, The Brewers, The Giants and The Dodgers. But if you look a little closer, are those teams really “out performing” them? We’re going to break this down into looking at their offence and their defence. First the offense.
There are some fans that say the Astros have the best offense in the league right now, statistically they rank FIRST in scoring at around 4.67 runs per game, they’re ranked FIRST in batting average at .245 again they’re FIRST in on-base percentage at .319. They’re third in the slugging percentage ranks with 0.447 and second in run differential sitting at +216.
As a team Houston are pretty deep with their only real problem being the catcher position with Martin Maldonado who sits on 12 home runs and 36 runs batted in, which in itself isn’t even bad! But when that’s your only real problem it’s very easy to see why the Astros offense is absolutely killing it this season.
Those racking up the most offensive stats however, are Yordan Alvarez who is up to 31 home runs and 98 runs batted in, Jose Altruve who sits on 29 home runs with 78 runs batted in, Kyle Tucker who has 27 home runs and 87 runs batted in and finally Carlos Correa who has a total of 24 home runs and 87 runs batted in so far this season and while those are the players hitting dingers, they’re backed by the likes of Michael Brantley, Yuli Gurriel and Alex Bregman.
Having a great offense is all well and good, but if you’re not bookending that with a solid defence then you’re never going to win titles, right? The Astros are currently ranked fourth in scoring defense, allowing 3.99 runs per game and fourth in earned run average with 3.68 which is very solid. Starting pitchers that lead the way are Zack Geinke who is 11-6 with a 4.11 earned run average, Framber Valdez, 11-5 with a 3.07 earned run average, Lance McCullers Jr, 12-4 with a 3.11 earned run average and Luis Garcia who sits 11-7 with a 3.32 earned run average.
All pretty solid stats if you ask me, could they be better? Yes, but when they’re doing as well as they are with statistically the strongest offense in the league it’s easy to see why it isn’t a fix that is drastically important. They’re doing incredibly well and I think they’ll do extremely well in the postseason, they’re definitely set up for it!
So there we have it, that’s my run down of the Houston Astros performances and statistics this season, they’re deservedly sat at the top of the American League West and honestly could push on if they tighten up their defensive end a little bit, squeeze a little more out of their starting pitchers and get them playing with confidence with ball in hand. I’m excited to see how they are moving into the world series which they’re all but qualified for at this point, what do you folks think? Will the Astros do well at the end of the day or are you someone who is still hung up on their stingy tactics and as such want them to fail? Let us know!