While many are ready to write off the 2020 Houston Astros, to their credit, the offense has gotten it done—so far. Read on to see just how.
Twelve games into their 2020 campaign, the Houston Astros possess a 6-6 record. While to some Astros fans, the season may seem like doom and gloom due to injuries to ace, Justin Verlander—as well as the closer, Roberto Osuna—there remains hope. In a season riddled with setbacks and yet-to-be-proven players, the Astros’ offense has come through in several key metrics. Please keep in mind these stats were compiled before the start of the Astros’ game against the A’s last night.
Team batting average, MLB rank: seventh
The Astros feature the seventh-best team batting average in the majors at .253, only four hundredths lower than that of the New York Yankees who sit in fourth place. Leading the majors, the Chicago White Sox—the new home of former Astros pitcher, Dallas Keuchel— possesses a .273 batting average. In case you were wondering, the 2015 AL Cy Young Award winner is 2-and-1 with a respectable 2.55 ERA, and has only allowed two walks in 17 innings of work.
Team runs scored, MLB rank: third
Not only are the White Sox making an early-season impression, the San Diego Padres currently trail Atlanta for the second-most runs scored in the majors with 72. However, the Astros lead the American League and currently sit in third place in the majors, by virtue of scoring 71 runs through 12 games.
While George Springer’s early-season batting average of .182 might alarm some Astros fans, the 6-3 slugger leads the ball club in RBI production, having driven in 12 of the team’s runs. And not far behind Springer, Kyle Tucker sits in third place in RBI production, as well as second place on the team with nine scored runs as a base runner. Subsequently, Astros’ manager, Dusty Baker, will have a hard time making a case to cut Tucker as MLB roster sizes must decrease due to the 2015 first-round pick’s early-season offensive contributions.
Team on-base percentage, MLB rank: second
What may seem abundantly obvious is that several key Astros players have experienced a slow
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start on offense. For example, through 12 games, Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman feature batting averages of .192 and .235, respectively.
Nevertheless, what may not be as clearly known is that the Astros have reached base at a considerably high clip. As a matter of fact, the Astros’ .348 on-base percentage leads the American League and ranks second in the majors. When the Astros’ core offensive players regain their All-Star-caliber production in the batter’s box, look for Houston’s team-wide on-base percentage to climb even higher.
With roughly 50 regular-season contests left to go, the injury-plagued Astros still have to prove they can stay the course. But with Michael Brantley, Carlos Correa, Martin Maldonado, and Yuli Gurriel all featuring an on-base percentage of .382 or better—as well as the exciting additions of Blake Taylor and Cristian Javier to the pitching staff—the Astros stand a chance at overcoming on-field adversity.
Houston Astros fans, whose 2020 performance has stood out to you the most and why? Please leave your comments below