Inside the clubhouse: Astros players sport their pink bats and pink wristbands. Happy Mother’s Day!
Major League Baseball players will continue a time-honored tradition today by swinging pink bats and wearing pink wristbands, in honor of Mother’s Day and MLB’s annual Going to Bat Against Breast Cancer promotion.
The bats are a hot pink hue, a contrast from the soft pink color of the bats from years past. The point of the promotion is to create awareness and draw attention to the cause, and the in that respect, this color of pink comes through loud and clear, both in the ballparks and on high-def TV.
It’s always nice to see the players embrace this particular promotion as they prepare their pink bats for the game and suit up with their pink wristbands. They will also wear pink ribbons on their jerseys.
A few snapshots from the visitors clubhouse at PNC Park this morning:
News, notes, tidbits:
* Today’s starter, Wandy Rodriguez, has 76 career wins and is tied with Mike Hampton for second on the club’s all-time wins list among lefties. Wandy is also 2-0 with a 0.64 ERA in the two day starts he’s had this year. He’s allowed one run over 14 innings.
Since 2009, Wandy’s 3.27 ERA over 102 starts is the second-lowest among lefties over that time span.
Lowest ERA among lefties since ’09:
Clayton Kershaw: 2.63
Wandy Rodriguez: 3.27
Cole Hamels: 3.31
* Jose Altuve will sign autographs, free of charge, as the Astros Team Store at Minute Maid Park on Saturday, May 19 from 1 to 2 p.m. CT. An Astros player will sign autographs at no charge one Saturday per month at the Team Store throughout the season.
* Outfielder Domingo Santana, the player to be named in the Hunter Pence trade, hit a walk-off grand slam in the ninth inning last night, lifting Class A Lancaster to an 8-4 win over Lake Elsinore. Santana, 19, cleared the batter’s eye in center field with that home run.
* Lancaster outfielder George Springer, who homered four times on Friday, has an eight-game hitting streak, during which he’s hitting .500 (14-for-28) with five homers and 10 RBIs.
* Triple-A Oklahoma City right-hander Paul Clemens threw seven shutout innings in a win over Tucson on Saturday. Clemens allowed three singles in that outing.
* The Astros bullpen — also known in these circles as “The Regulators” — has posted a combined 2.62 ERA this season. Brett Myers is 9-for-9 in save opportunities and has posted a 0.77 ERA in his 12 appearances. Opponents are hitting .146 off of him.
Wilton Lopez (3-0) is tied for second in the NL in relief wins. He also has a 1.83 ERA and has not walked a batter in his 18 appearances (19 2/3 IP).
Brandon Lyon has posted a 0.90 ERA with 12 strikeouts in his last 10 appearances, and Wesley Wright has held left-handed hitters to a .105 average (2-for-19) while stranding all eight runners he inherited.
LOWEST BULLPEN ERA – NL:
1. Cincinnati – 2.41
2. Houston – 2.62
4. San Diego – 2.73