HOUSTON -- At this time last year, the Astros' bullpen was a mess. The team had blown seven off its first 11 save chances, and closer Brandon Lyon was headed to the disabled list with season-ending surgery, making Mark Melancon the closer.
With Brett Myers handling the closing duties this year, the Astros have converted six of nine save chances through Tuesday, with Myers going 6-for-6 after pitching a 1-2-3 ninth inning Tuesday against the Mets. Opposing hitters are batting .115 against Myers this year.
"He's done a good job," manager Brad Mills said. "There's no reason to think he wouldn't [pitch well], even though he hadn't done it a whole lot. He's embraced it from Day 1 and continues to throw the ball well, and it's nice to have that at the end of the game and hopefully we can get over the hump and score enough runs to get to the ball to him to utilize him more."
Myers, who was moved to the closer role early in the spring after making 66 starts for Houston the previous two seasons, has fully embraced closing.
"I like coming to the ballpark every night knowing there's a chance I'll play," he said. "It's fun because I get a chance to go out there and pitch, and I like doing that. Some days aren't going to be as good as others, but hopefully experience will take over and help me make pitches and get out of tight situations."