The Astros and Pirates open a three-game series today at PNC Park. Over the last month, both teams have struggled. Well, the Astros have struggled for the past three months, but the Pirates are really sucking air.
Since Aug. 3, the Astros are 6-22, which is the worst record in the Majors in that span. The Cubs are next at 8-22 and the Pirates have the third-worst record at 10-19.
Here are some more notes on the Astros and Pirates:
— The Astros enter the series with just 13 wins in 66 road games this year. In 1979, Astros pitcher Joe Niekro won 13 games on the road, going 13-7 with a 3.32 ERA.
— The Pirates are enjoying the best home season they’ve had in decades. They have a .606 winning percentage at home, which is their best since posting a .654 winning percentage at home in 1992. They have a 2.98 ERA at home, the best since a 2.79 ERA in 1984.
— There’s quite a disparity between the ages of the Astros’ and Pirates’ rosters. The Astros’ average age is 26 years, 255 days, which is the youngest in the Majors. The Pirates are 28 years, 309 days, which is the 15th oldest in the Majors.
— Brett Wallace has an unusual breakdown for the Astros: all of his home runs have come on the road, but his batting average is much higher at Minute Maid Park than it is away from home. He’s hitting .317 at home with no home runs and .237 on the road with six home runs.
— In his two impressive Major League seasons, Astros 2B Jose Altuve has not been able to figure out Pirate pitching. He’s hitting .230 (14-for-61) in his career against the Pirates, which is the lowest of any NL Central opponent.
— Edgar Gonzalez last pitched in an MLB game in August 2011 for Colorado, and hasn’t started a big-league contest since September 2009 while with Oakland. His career has been a pretty extensive odyssey. He was with the D-backs from 2003-08 and was sent down eight times. He pitched for the A’s in 2009 and was signed by the Dodgers, Rays and Rockies in 2010-11, pitching in one Major League game. Since November, he has been signed by the A’s, Rockies and Astros.