Houston Astros Fans, Look at the Bright Side

Richard ZowieCorrespondent IMay 8, 2009

HOUSTON - APRIL 06:  Miguel Tejada #10 of the Houston Astros gets a hit against the Chicago Cubs during the Opening Day game on April 6, 2009 at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

At least our team's making fans of other baseball teams happy.

An overworked bullpen and an ineffective starter led to another Chicago Cubs victory over the Houston Astros. Chicago scored a run in the first inning. Houston even held a brief 2-1 for an inning before Chicago scored two in the third, one in the fourth and four in the ninth en route to an 8-5 victory.

Just as well: Chicago outhit Houston 14-8.

Astros pitcher Russ Ortiz lasted just 2.1 innings, giving up six hits, three runs (all earned); he picked up his first loss of the season to go to 2-1 to match the innings he lasted. His ERA is 5.91. Since he had a short stint, he won't need to complain about being too tired to pitch in his next start.

Astros reliever Chris Sampson pitched three perfect innings, making me wonder if you can get a ticker-tape parade down a block or two in downtown Houston for pitching 33 percent of a perfect game. I'm guessing no, but in a city that's never won a World Series or Super Bowl, you never know.

You have to pity Miguel Tejada. He went 4-5 with a double, home run and 2 RBIs to raise his season average to .308. Lance Berkman, conversely, struggled, going 0-5 with four strikeouts--earning the dreaded golden sombrero.*

Cubs fans must appreciate all the help the Astros have given them in this series. Chicago's now 16-12 and in second place in the N.L. Central. Will this be the year they break their 101-year-old World Series drought?

* Three strikeouts in a game is a hat trick, four a golden sombrero and five the platinum sombrero.