Monday, April 30, 2012

Pre-Game: Game 23 - New York Mets @ Houston Astros

After a series win against the Rockies in Colorado, the Mets will travel to Houston to open a 3 game series with the Astros at Minute Maid Park.  The Mets are a surprising 13-9 on the young season and will look to improve that record against an Astros team that has struggled thus far in 2012.  The Astros come into the series at  8-14 on the year.  They have not had many problems scoring runs despite a lack of household names; however, their pitching has not been good as they rank13th in the National League in ERA.  Young SS Jose Altuve is the player to watch on this Astros club as he has come out of the gate on fire with an batting average of .373.

On the mound for the visiting Mets tonight will be knuckleballer R.A. Dickey (3-1, 4.44).  Dickey bounced back from an awful outing against the Braves in ATL by holding the Marlins to only 1 run over 7 innings in a 5-1 Mets win last Wednesday.  In his career against HOU, Dickey is 1-2, with a 3.82 ERA, with both loses coming in 2011.

On the mound for the Astros will be hard throwing right-hander Bud Norris (1-1, 5.84).  Norris got roughed up in his last outing against the Brewers.  Across 5.2 innings pitched, Norris allowed 7 ER and 9 hits last Tuesday in Milwaukee.  In his career against New York, Norris is 1-1, with a 4.85 ERA.

Game time is scheduled for 8:05PM.  Here are the starting lineups.

For the (13-9) New York Mets:

1.  Kirk Nieuwenhuis LF
2.  Ruben Tejada SS
3.  Daniel Murphy 2B
4.  David Wright 3B
5.  Ike Davis 1B
6.  Mike Baxter RF
7.  Andres Torres CF
8.  Josh Thole C
9.  R.A. Dickey P

For the (8-14) Houston Astros:

1.  Jordan Schafer CF
2.  Jose Altuve2B
3.  Jed Lowrie SS
4.  Travis Buck LF
5.  Matt Downs 1B
6.  Brian Bogusevic RF
7.  Chris Johnson 3B
8.  Jason Castro C
9.  Bud Norris P