Still no signs of life from the Astros

An 0-4 start at home will take care of most of that spring training optimism. The Astros got taken out early by the Phillies and routed 8-0.

What happened to Bud Norris? He threw 82 pitches and couldn’t get out of the third inning. Very wild, with four walks, including a four-pitch walk to start the game and a walk of the pitcher that ended his night with two outs in the third. Strangely, he threw 29 balls and 26 strikes to left-handers, and 9 balls and 18 strikes to righties. So maybe there’s something about left-handers that bothers him.

And in fact, there is. He had the same issue last year:

— Against lefties: 111 total batters faced, 19 walks.

— Against righties: 138 TBF, 6 walks.

Any opposing manager is going to load up with lefties against Norris until he figures out how not to walk them. As for the Phillies, their best hitters are Howard, Utley, Ibanez and Rollins, three lefties and a switch-hitter. Why exactly did Brad Mills put Norris in against them?

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