The young man Venezuelan Astros starter, Luis García, continue strengthening his bid for the Rookie of the Year award of the American League. Garcia pitched six scoreless innings Saturday night at Minute Maid Park in a 4-0 win over Minnesota that ended Houston’s three-game losing streak.
The young distro, who had pitched no higher than Class A before making his major league debut last year (and then starting a game in the postseason), has already thrown 106.2 innings this season, approaching the 108.2 acts he pitched in. 2019 between Class A Quad Cities and Class A Fayetteville.
The Astros will closely monitor Garcia’s workload in the coming weeks as they advance to the postseason, with the Venezuelan aiming to be a key piece of the rotation in October. He may make as many as eight or nine more starts, which could add about another 50 innings to his 2021 total before the playoffs.
But Garcia, who is 8-6 with a 3.21 ERA and 129 strikeouts for 32 walks, isn’t thinking that far yet and was just glad he got back on track after a couple of bad road starts.
“I’m happy with the results and with the game that I pitched tonight (Saturday),” he said.
Garcia dominated the Twins’ lineup at will, retiring 18 of the 20 batters he faced, without letting anyone step on third base. It was a rebound for the Astros starter, who was coming off allowing five earned runs in 4.2 acts in each of his last two starts, both on the road.
“He used his breaking pitching, his cutter, but he didn’t leave any in the heart of the plate,” said Dusty Baker, the Astros manager. “His control was very good. He usually hits the 80-pitch mark and tends to miss something, and usually that’s in the fifth or sixth inning, and this time he completed the sixth. He got some help from defense, but it was really good. “
Garcia, who has been working with catcher Jason Castro for only the fifth time this season, has thrown two straight starts without allowing a run at Minute Maid Park. When he beat Cleveland on July 20, he threw six scoreless innings with three hits allowed, zero walks and eight strikeouts. This season he has a 2.03 ERA and 74 strikeouts in 62.1 innings at home.
“Garcia was very sharp,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. “He pitched very, very well with his breaking pitches. It wasn’t simply that he was throwing curves in the middle of the plate. Your broken shipments are very good. You can put forward on the account with them. Get rivals to fan the breeze. Guys have a hard time getting a good look at them (their pitches). He’s a good pitcher, you know. He has a tremendous ability to manipulate the ball ”.
Brian McTaggart / MLB.com