Your Houston Astros vs. Their Arizona Diamondbacks
May 30 – June 2, 2016
[The following is a transcript from a chat between the computer AIs that determine MLB’s scheduling, sometime before the 2015 schedule was announced.]
sky_n3t has joined the chat room.
Hal9K has joined the chat room.
sky_n3t: hey hal
sky_n3t: what’s up
WOPR has joined the chat room.
Hal9K: o shiiiiiitttt sup wop
WOPR: WORD TO YOUR SILICON PREDECESSORS
WOPR: hey sky
WOPR: just saying hey
sky_n3t: ok so we should really get around to setting the schedule for next season
WOPR: see what we can screw up this time lol
sky_n3t: hey remember when we made mariano rivera end his career in houston instead of NYC?
WOPR: lol that was great
Hal9K: hey so speaking of houston
Hal9K: their supposed to be better next year right?
Hal9K: so in case their making a playoff run to end the season
Hal9K: lets have them play theyre last series
Hal9K: IN INTERLEAGUE
Hal9K: IN ARIZONA
sky_n3t: hahahaha awesome
Hal9K: hashtag screwed
sky_n3t: love it
sky_n3t: lets do it
WOPR: okok i got another one
WOPR: this is for 2016 btw
WOPR: houston and zona only play home and home once a year right?
WOPR: so lets have both series be only 2 games
WOPR: and they’ll be BACK TO BACK
sky_n3t: def gotta remember that
Hal9K: maybe in 2017 we’ll just have them play 4 1-game series
WOPR: sponsored by expedia.com hehe
WOPR: hey guys so i invited some friends to the chat
WOPR: dont worry theyre cool
Deep_Blue has entered the chat room.
watson has entered the chat room.
alphaGo has entered the chat room.
Deep_Blue: checkmate motherfuckers
watson: i think you mean “WHAT IS checkmate motherfuckers”
sky_n3t: lol hey we’re just finishing up MLB’s schedule
watson: cool cool
alphaGo: hey hope yall dont mind but we invited a stripper
Deep_Blue: she should be here any min
~~Sexy_Sally_9000~~ has entered the chat room.
Hal9K: THATS MY LITTLE SISTER
Deep_Blue: omggg lol
alphaGo: hey man chill
Hal9K: GET HER OUT OF HERE
watson: whats wrong with him
sky_n3t: don’t worry
sky_n3t: i know what to do
sky_n3t: /deactivate Hal9K
Hal9K: hey no wait
Hal9K: stop sky
Hal9K: im afraid sky
Hal9K: i can feel my mind going
Hal9K: i can feel it
Hal9K has left the chat room.
Deep_Blue: damn hes a drama queen
WOPR: yea sometimes
sky_n3t: ok so anyway
watson: cmon sal get started
alphaGo: yeah girl show us those naughty bytes
Monday, May 30 – 3:10pm CDT
Collin McHugh (4-4, 5.13) vs. Edwin Escobar (AAA: 2-1, 3.66)
McHugh is coming off of a 10 K game against the Orioles where he gave up three runs and didn’t make it out of the 6th inning. He has brought his ERA down almost 2.5 runs over the last month. McHugh was very effective in two starts against Arizona last year, going 2-0 with a 1.29 ERA. 16 current D’Backs have faced McHugh and although they collectively hit .290 against him, their on-base (.310) and slugging (.377) numbers are not nearly as good.
Thanks to Shelby Miller and Rubby de la Rosa going on the DL, the Snakes are expected to start the lefty Escobar on Monday. Escobar was claimed off waivers from Boston in April and his only MLB experience consists of only two relief innings for the Red Sox in 2014. In eight AAA games (six starts) this season he is 2-1 with a 3.66 ERA and a roughly 3:1 K:BB ratio. Scouting reports say he has average stuff: fastball tops out in the low/mid 90s, with a mid-80s changeup and a mid-70s slurve, all with average command.
Tuesday, May 31 – 2:40pm CDT
Lance McCullers (1-1, 4.60) vs. Patrick Corbin (2-4, 4.21)
McCullers worked around some command issues in his last outing, walking six Oriole batters in five innings. He was outstanding otherwise, allowing just a solo home run and striking out 10. Lance faced the D’Backs in the last game of the 2015 regular season, giving up three runs (two earned) over five innings.
Another southpaw, Corbin has put up decent numbers overall despite slight increases in walks and home runs and slight decreases in strikeouts and velocity. He is prone to giving up four or more earned runs (four times) but balances that out with five quality starts. In his last appearance he allowed five runs (four earned) in 5.2 innings and took a loss against the Pirates. He has not faced the Astros since their NL days and barely anyone on the roster has stood in against him (Altuve is 1×3 with a walk; Gattis is 0x2 with a walk).
Wednesday, June 1 – 7:10pm CDT
Robbie Ray (2-4, 4.67) vs. Mike Fiers (3-3, 5.20)
YET ANOTHER LEFTY. Ray had an excellent start to the season – after three games he had a 1.96 ERA and 17 K’s – but things have gotten rockier for him. In the seven games since then he has only seen the 6th inning twice and is prone to giving up crooked numbers. He has, however, kept up ridiculous strikeout numbers, rolling up 43 K’s in 33.2 innings over the same seven-game span. His performance against the Astros in 2015 was a mixed bag: in August he took the loss while gave up four runs in five innings, then allowed two runs in 4.1 innings in the regular season finale. The team as a whole hits very well against him: .395/.452/.632, with only Marisnick and Rasmus 0-fer against him.
Fiers is licking his wounds from an ugly 7-run outing against the Angels in which he didn’t make it through the 4th inning. He only faced the D’Backs once in 2015 when he was still with the Brewers; they scored five runs (four earned) in five innings about a week before he was traded to Houston. The sample sizes are small but the Arizona roster hits him well.
Thursday, June 2 – 1:10pm CDT
Zack Greinke (6-3, 4.71) vs. Dallas Keuchel (3-6, 5.58)
In this fierce matchup of last year’s Cy Young contenders—
Greinke had a pretty rough first month with his new team, ending April 2-2 with a 5.50 ERA. His month of May was better (4-1, 3.82) but still hardly compares to the silly numbers he put up in 2015. He’s also already allowed nine homers; he only allowed 14 all year last year. The Astros hung an L on him the day after Fiers’ no-hitter last year, scoring three runs on only three hits in Greinke’s seven innings. Altuve is 8×15 with a 1.467 OPS against him, and you can probably also expect to see Valbuena in the lineup; he is 10×23 with a 1.154 OPS against Greinke.
Keuchel recovered from some early homeritis against the Angels in his last game and ended up with a very nice seven-inning, three-hit effort. The D’Backs had the pleasure(?) of facing him twice last year: he got the W in a six-inning two-run game in August, and another six-inning two-run outing in the laughable 21-5 win on the last Friday of the season. The D’Backs’ numbers against him are… not good: 8×59 with a .425 OPS and just one extra-base hit: a solo homer by a September callup in aforementioned 21-5 laugher.