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Astros need to find the clutch in Clutch City

Houston Astros
Posted at 7:08 PM, Oct 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-23 20:12:46-04

Clutch hitting is a massive component in baseball.

Clutch hitting is perhaps the most important part of playoff baseball, and outside of a few home runs, the Astros have seen their ability to drive in runs drop.

The Astros lost the Washington Nationals in Game 1 of the World Series Tuesday night, 5-4. The team was 3-for-12 with runners in scoring position; nine baserunners with an opportunity to score were left stranded on base.

That has been the problem for the Astros for much of the postseason: producing hits while runners are in scoring position. In fact, they are hitting below .200 in the 2019 postseason.

"We need to find more holes, we need to find more pitches to hit," Astros Manager AJ Hinch said. "I liked our at-bats yesterday. They have progressively (been) getting better."

The Astros could use a spark from Alex Bregman. The MVP candidate has had a rough postseason at the plate with just nine hits. Seeing Bregman struggle at the plate is a rarity. He hit .296 with 41 homers and 112 RBIs in a 2019 season that has him considered as one of the Amerian League's best.

"It's rare to see him mentally frustrated," Hinch said. "But if there is anyone who is mentally equipped to figure it out, it is Alex Bregman."

It is no secret the Astros need the bats to get hot. If they don't get going soon they'll be going home empty-handed.

That is a silver lining for the team, however. Their hitting has been below average, and they still find themselves as one of the last two teams standing in all of baseball.

Now, they just need to break out of the slump.

"Once this offense starts to click, it is going to be a scary situation for those guys over there," Astros' outfielder Josh Reddick said. "We can put up a crooked number really fast."

The Astros will have face Washington right-hander Stephen Strasburg tonight in Game 2.