On an off-day for the Angels, the Texas Rangers and Houston Astros created a compelling night of action in the American League West on Tuesday.
In case you missed it, Yu Darvish retired 26 straight Astros to start the game before allowing a single to Marwin Gonzalez in the bottom of the ninth inning. No longer are the Houston Astros completely anonymous. As the New York Daily News proclaimed, “YU BLEW IT.”
The pertinent question for the Halos: Are the Astros that bad, or is Darvish that good?
The right-hander joined a list that includes Dave Stieb, Mike Mussina and eight pitchers you might not have heard of who have lost perfect games in the ninth inning. Anyone can do it, even Armando Galarraga.
The Angels will find out soon enough whether Darvish’s stuff is for real. If he pitches on regular rest, he’ll face the Angels (and Jered Weaver) on Sunday in Arlington. The game is scheduled for a 5 p.m. national broadcast on ESPN2.
Some bullet points for a Wednesday morning:
• Happy belated birthday (one day late) to former Angels pitcher Don Sutton, one of few professional athletes who can call himself a regular on the Game Show Network.
• Eye-opening stat courtesy of @msimonespn: The slash line for all of MLB through three days is .217/.288/.341, a .629 OPS. Those numbers will rise as teams trot out their third, fourth and fifth starters.
• John Denver kept it real. Like a rapper who lives, and raps about, a hard-knock life, Denver was an environmentalist who sang about the environment. Also like too many rappers, Denver died too young. His music lives on with a soon-to-be-released cover album; NPR has the “First Listen”: