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Porter says Astros need to tighten up defense

LAKELAND, Fla. -- Manager Bo Porter was clearly unhappy with his club's defense in recent days. The Astros committed two more errors in Monday's 8-5 Grapefruit League loss to the Tigers -- one leading to an unearned run.

Since taking over the team, Porter has stressed the importance of fundamentals and not giving the opposition extra outs, but that's exactly what the Astros have been doing -- committing 15 errors in 11 games.

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"We've got to catch the ball," he said. "We've come back from every deficit we've had this entire spring. Offensively, we're scoring runs, but at the same time we've got to make it a little bit easier on our pitching staff to catch the ball when it's hit to us, and our pitchers got to do a better job of pitching ahead in the count and limiting some of those deep counts."

Jonathan Villar committed an error at shortstop in the second inning, though it didn't lead to any runs. Jake Elmore's error allowed Alex Avila to reach to the start the fifth inning, and he eventually scored.

"This is Major League Baseball and to play in his league you have make those plays," Porter said.

When asked how he would address the errors, Porter didn't mince words.

"This is the thing: either you make the plays or we're going to find someone else who's going to make them. That's not hard to figure out," he said.

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