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Houston Astros Cool Off, Lose To Chicago Cubs

LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 16:  Wandy Rodriguez #51 of the Houston Astros pitches in the game against the Los Angeles Dodgers on July 16, 2009 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Richard ZowieCorrespondent IJuly 28, 2009

Sounds like the advice Bill Parcells gave about Tony Romo being the next great Dallas Cowboys quarterback could be used with anyone who thinks the Houston Astros are ready to take over the National League Central and become the next MLB dynasty.

"Put away the anointing oil."

Just a week ago, Houston-area emergency rooms were overrun with cases of a strange strain of Swine Flu (H2A2), otherwise known as "Astros Fever."

Now, those with the apparent flu are experiencing a rapid recovery.

The Astros are now 50-49 with a three-game losing streak, courtesy of yesterday's 5-1 loss at Wrigley Field to the Chicago Cubs in 13 innings.

Wandy Rodriguez pitched good enough to win, going seven innings, allowing one run on six hits and striking out seven. But Houston faced Astros killer Carlos Zambrano, who allowed three hits and one run in seven innings. That run was a long center-field shot by Carlos Lee; the homer wound up somewhere in Lake Michigan.

I'm still trying to figure out how Zambrano, who's been lights-out against the Astros, would float a fat pitch in the strike zone on an 0-2 count. Oh well. I guess it was just a bad pitch.

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