Left Out: Astros 1st WS team minus lefty pitcher since 1903
HOUSTON (AP) — Something was left out when the Houston Astros submitted their World Series roster.
Namely, left-handed pitchers.
For the first time since the very first World Series in 1903, a team has no lefties on its Fall Classic staff.
Instead, Houston has 12 pitchers, all right-handers.
Lefties? Shut out.
Not that Astros manager AJ Hinch was worried going into Game 1 against Washington on Tuesday night.
"The fact that we don't have a lefty to give them one of those looks is just a reality that we've dealt with for a long time," Hinch said.
The only teams with no left-handers on their World Series roster were Boston and Pittsburgh in that first matchup more than a century ago, the Elias Sports Bureau said. Boston had only three pitchers, including Cy Young, on its roster and the Pirates carried five.
Deacon Phillippe went 3-2 and threw 44 innings for Pittsburgh, which lost the Series 5-3. There were 13 complete games and neither team used more than one reliever when it did go call to the bullpen.
The Astros did use some lefties this year.
Wade Miley went 14-6, struggled to a 16.68 ERA in five September starts and pitched once in relief during the AL Division Series against Tampa Bay. But after giving up three runs over 2 2/3 innings against the Rays, he was dropped from later postseason rounds.
Framber Valdéz went 4-7 in 26 games for Houston during the regular season and fellow lefty Cionel Pérez pitched five times. Lefty Reymin Guduan got into seven games, but was released late in the season.
"We have our roster and I love our roster," Hinch said. "And I love the fact that we have some righties that do very, very well against lefties."
"So I don't work in a lot of hypotheticals. We have what we have, and we're happy with it. The challenges are just trying to give good left-handed hitters different looks throughout a long series," he said.