Astros 9, Pirates 5
W: Harrell (8-7)
L: McDonald (10-5)
“A little bit of this town goes a very long way. After five days in Vegas, you feel like you’ve been here for five years.”
The American Dream was never in Las Vegas, Hunter. Oh, maybe glimmers of it were, ones that shone off of the tail fins in the neon gloom, but those were fleeting sparks. Savage the hunt may have been, but that American Dream you went after was more of a great idea to sell an editor on for expenses and Fun, because who was going to compare row houses in Peoria and San Bernardino to measure The Dream? Not you, you had something else in mind.
No, the American Dream isn’t in Vegas, not any more. I’m not even sure the Dream still exists anyway. I’ll tell you what does exist though. I’ll tell you why there is a Las Vegas at all.
You’re on this date with me
And the pickings have been lush
And yet before the evening is over
You might give me the brush
You might forget your manners
You might refuse to stay
And so the best that I can do is pray
Luck be a lady tonight
Luck be a lady tonight
Luck if you’ve ever been a lady to begin with
Please be a lady tonight
After six weeks of gothic horror, culminating in a twelve-game losing streak, the Astros found the equivalent of 100 monkeys with typewriters producing a sonnet. Harrell started strong and worked quickly, limiting the Pirates to an Alvarez double on a mistake pitch through three. In the bottom of the frame, the Astros did what they’ve done for a month – load the bases and chip in one run.
Energized with a lead, Harrell gave up a titanic shot off the giant Budweiser sign in right to Garrett Jones and the Bucs were on top, 2-1. Schafer answered with a two-run clout of his own in the bottom of the inning, but Altuve’s double was left unresolved.
In the bottom of the fifth, the Astros plated two more to make it 5-2. Harrell began to falter in the sixth, giving up a single and two walks to load the bases with two outs. Mills went to the pen and pulled out Fernando Rodriguez, working on a third day in a row. His opponent was pinch-hitter Andrew McCutchen, and the fastballs he threw only made us hold our breath even more until the tumblers clicked into place, the dice took the bounce they weren’t supposed to, the cards finally fell our way and Superman popped out to end the threat.
The Astros added four more over the next three innings; Pittsburgh chimed in with three and this one was in the books as an Astro win, first one in thirteen games.
Luck let a gentleman see
Just how nice a dame you can be
I know the way you’ve treated
Other guys you’ve been with
Luck be a lady with me
A lady never flirts with strangers
She’ll have a heart, she’ll be nice
A lady doesn’t wander all over the room
And then blow on some other guy’s dice
Forged by luck or not, Houston had some heroes today. Marwin Gonzalez was 3 for 5 and had 3 RBIs. Scott Moore was 2 for 4 with 2 RBIs and two very fine plays at third. New 1B Pearce got a hit and scored a run and made a nice grab of an errant throw that could’ve led to a run. No less important were the eight walks the Astros worked off of a shaky James McDonald – two each for Altuve and Snyder.
Every so often it all works out. The right amount of bacon at breakfast, just enough sleep the night before, the step back on the curb, turning the head to avoid the sun and missing the bird droppings – these are all the things that make a place like Las Vegas possible. If the Astros can play like they did today, who’s to say they can’t do it more often? This could be the start of a nice little win streak. Maybe these guys are really going to change things, turn it all around. After all, the margins are so tiny in baseball and anything can happen. Right?
Las Vegas is built on this. Dreams are broken by this every day.
So why don’t we keep this party polite
Never move out of my sight
Stick with me, baby
I’m the guy that you came in with
Luck be a lady
Luck be a lady, luck be a lady tonight