Kansas City Royals: Second Postseason Picture Update

CHICAGO, IL - AUGUST 11: Mike Moustakas
CHICAGO, IL - AUGUST 11: Mike Moustakas /
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ARLINGTON, TX – AUGUST 13: Marwin Gonzalez
ARLINGTON, TX – AUGUST 13: Marwin Gonzalez /

AL West leader

Houston Astros

Overall record (through Sunday): 72-45

Last week: 1-5

This week: At Arizona Diamondbacks (Mon.-Tue); vs. Arizona Diamondbacks (Wed.-Thu.); vs. Oakland Athletics (Fri.-Sun.)

Is it time to panic in Houston?

Well, that depends.

This team still has a commanding lead in the West Division. It’s grasp on home-field advantage through the ALCS is less secure than it once was, but the Astros are still in the driver’s seat.

The problem is that this team just doesn’t look like a World Series contender right now. Emphasis on the “right now” part.

A solid, if unspectacular, performance from Dallas Keuchel on Sunday gives Houston hope its ace is rounding in to form.

George Springer has returned from his injury, but Carlos Correa remains out.

Bottom line, though, is the Astros stayed pat at the trade deadline when they could have solidified themselves as the AL’s best chance to win the World Series.

Although the team acquired relief pitcher Tyler Clippard from the White Sox on Sunday night, the deadline decision-making is appearing costly at this juncture.

Next: A New Level of Panic

We’ll have to wait and see if it leads to an early postseason exit.