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Here is How the Astros Make the Postseason STILL

All around social media Houston Astros fans were throwing in the towel. They had JUST got hammered by the Yankees 4-9 to drop to 12-24. This fan base was in a meltdown.

It's over right? The Astros should just fire sale and dump everyone and start over. It was a good run, but it's over.

I have posted this on X, and I want you to remember who was saying what LAST WEEK.

My main point is for folks is that the season is not over, and the Astros can still make the postseason. It is just 2005 all over again. Let's take a journey back in Astros history to find out how.

I ran these polls on 4/12/24 and 4/25/24. I did on this topic to gauge the angst of the Astros fan base.

The Astros were losing the night of the second poll to fall to 7-19. Of course, THIS was a HORRRIBLE start. The Astros have gone 11-6 since that night.

Twenty- Six percent said the Astros would lose LESS than 70 games. The 2014 Astros went 70-92. I know it was a terrible start but LESS THAN 70 WINS?

I am now running THIS poll to see where the fan base is tonight. Please vote.

The early results look far closer to the April 12th poll. Given where they are, this is optimistic; and I think good analysis at the same time.

Why do I say it is 2005 all over again? Let me take you back to one of the most iconic moments in Astros history.

As a reminder, the 2004 Astros finished 92-70. They had lost the NLCS. Hopes were high for 2005, but there was some worried about some of the players lost from the 2004 team.

What do you think the record on 5/16/05 was? It was 14-23. It got worse. On 5/24/05, the Astros were 15-30.

Today, the Astros are 18-25. The Astros are in better shape than they were on the same date of the 2005 NL Champion Houston Astros.

Back to the history lesson. The Houston Chronicle famously declared the (19-32) 2005 Astros dead with the famous tombstone edition on 6/1/05.

Editor's Note: I will update and republish this on 6/1/24.

On that page - Grounds for Burial

  1. They're last in the majors with 182 runs (3.6 R/G- 30th. 77 wRC+- 30th)

  2. They don't have a regular hitting above Craig Biggio's 0.284 (0.855 OPS- 122 wRC+)

    1. (Ensberg - 193 PA- was surprisingly hitting 135 wRC+)

    2. (Berkman - 89 PA- was disappointing at 75 wrc+)

  3. Their bullpen is 2-10 with a 5.34 ERA. (4.65 FIP) (27th in ERA, 25th in FIP)

  4. They are on pace to win 15 road games and lose 66. (they finished 36-45)

  5. That 35-10 finish of last season? Happens once every 43 years. (The 2004 Astros finished 26-19. Not too shabby.)

Not Listed

  1. Starting Pitchers 4.00 ERA and 3.76 FIP (This was 11th in ERA and 2nd in FIP)

How many of those are true for the 2024 Astros today?

  1. The Astros are a mid-level offense by runs scored. They are a top 7 offense by most offensive metrics. (14th in R/G, 6th in wRC+)

  2. The Astros have three batters over Biggio's 122 wRC+ and Alvarez is at 119, Meyers is at 118, Caratini is at 117. They are MILES better than the 2005 Astros offense.

    1. (Pena - 176 PA- is surprisingly hitting 141 wRC+)

    2. (Bregman - 171 PA- has been overall disappointing at 84 wRC+)

  3. The 2024 bullpen is 6-11 with a 4.26 ERA (4.12 FIP) (This is 19th in ERA and 19th in FIP)

  4. The 2023-2024 Astros fan base has demanded they were a great road team when I showed last year's team was actually extremely LUCKY on the road. The current team is 8-13 on the road (on pace to finish 31-50 on the road.)

Starting Pitchers 4.97 ERA and 4.62 FIP (This is 28th in ERA and 29th in FIP)

Let's compare all of that focusing on how each aspect of the game was relative to the league.

Each team has a strength that the advanced results highlights while the actual results lag.

  • 2005 the SP was top of the league according to FIP and middle of the pack by ERA

  • 2024 the hitting is top 20% per wRC+ and mediocre by R/G.

Each team has a weakness that is at or near the worst in the league

  • 2005 the hitting was dead last in the MLB

  • 2024 the SP is one of the worst in the MLB

The Relief Pitching was/ is disappointing compared to expectations for both teams.

So, what happened in 2005?

  1. The weakness became league average.

    1. Most batters got incrementally better

    2. Berkman turned into a beast - 157 wRC+

    3. Overall batting improved 23%

  2. The strength performed up to the advanced stat indications- SP DOMINATED

  3. The heralded RP stepped up to their reputation.

    1. Most RP got better.

    2. One of the high leverage relief pitchers went from mediocre to great.

    3. Overall RP improved 20%

Overall is looked like this in 2005.

What if the same happened for the 2024 Astros? What would it look like.

  1. The strength performed up the advanced metric.

  2. Let's say the addition of Garcia, McCullers, and Urquidy improve the starting pitching 10%. Given the bad luck of several pitchers this is not unreasonable.

  3. Let's say the RP gets help from SP moving to the bullpen and the RP improves 10%

That would look something like this:

IF JUST THAT happened which is FAR less than the 2005 improvement, the Astros would finish 86-76. That might be enough to win the division.

Is all of this Crazy? Maybe.

I have covered this many times already but let me also say it here.

The folks at show the strength of schedule played.

The Astros rank second. Multiple sources rank the schedule that the Astros have faced as a top 5 hardest schedule.

Here is the rankings of the remaining schedule. The Astros have the second easiest schedule remaining of all of the AL teams.

This analysis is based also on their projections of how the teams will finish.

So, WHAT else would drive the pitching to get significantly better? Easier competition.

Let's see what has happened to the Astros Postseason Odds on

Since 5/8/24, that fateful night I pointed to in the first tweet referenced here, the Astros are 6-1 and raised their odds of making the postseason from 31.3% to 48.8%.

They have basically even odds to make the playoffs folks. Is anyone telling you that? I just did.

The Astros are NOT done. Anyone telling you they are, is ignoring Astros history and the history of several World Series champions that Astros fans should know. We will cover that more next time.

My commitment to you will be to track the Astros rise. I will also share what they should do if they can't make this happen.

If you want actual objective analysis based on data, THIS is the place to be. If you want a place like this to continue, please support this site. Here is how.

I give you the full url link, so you know this is not some scam link. It is legit. PLEASE help this site grow.

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