Originally posted on Fox Sports Houston  |  Last updated 7/2/12
In the midst of continuing their season long road woes while dropping three straight to the Cubs on Sunday the Astros had others news notes worth following. First of all, congratulations to second baseman Jose Altuve for being named a reserve for the 2012 National League All Star team. The honor was well deserved for the .300-hitting spark plug. Unfortunately, his teammate, Jed Lowrie, was bypassed. Upon first look that seemed to be just a case of a team with little on field success being ignored which is often the case. But upon further reflection the skipping of Lowrie is worthy of question. No doubt he was left off the club since three other shortstops were selected. Yet, what he has done so far this season should rank him ahead of one or two of them. On top of that the Astros may have a poor record, but the Cubs record is still worse and they got two NL team-members. Selecting an all-star team is never easy. And every year deserving candidates are ignored. It is just too bad this year the Astros had one of them. Lee Still Undecided Carlos Lee had still not decided whether he would accept a trade to the Dodgers as I put these words into the laptop at about 11 pm Eastern Sunday night. A final decision by Lee could come at any time. He may have been thinking he should have accepted the trade earlier today while on the Astros flight to Pittsburgh. The flight was very turbulent as the plane reduced its flying altitude coming into the Pittsburgh area. The bouncing was quite violent at times and not just few of the travelling party were a bit un-nerved. But all things ended well as the plane landed. It was only fitting the flight was less than smooth. The whole road season for the Astros has certainly been that. Still the only club in all of major league baseball with fewer than ten road victories, the road simply has not been kind. A lot of that is the Astros own fault. In the recently completed Chicago series Houston garnered only 18 hits and two runs in three games. They were shut out and held to only four hits in two of the games. Astro pitching never gave up more than four runs in any of the games, but it was enough for the Cubs who entered the series five and a half games behind the Astros standings to gain a sweep. They now trail Houston by only two and a half games. The Astros will reach the half way point in the season with the second game in Pittsburgh on Tuesday. Regardless what happens Monday and Tuesday they will still be on a pace to avoid 100 losses for second season, but not by much. To keep that from happening they must learn how to win better on the road. Once upon a time it was always possible to make things better in Pittsburgh. Those days are past. The Pirates are battling for the top of the NL Central these days. That is what the Astros used to do annually not that many years ago.
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