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House on the path to success

The Major League Baseball season has once again reached its annual all-star break.

The MLB All-Star game, also known as the “Mid-Summer Classic”, took place in Minnesota Tuesday night. The game always serves as both a reflecting point for fans and players, as well as a projection point. It’s a time to gauge what took place over the first half of the season, and what lies in store in the second half.

For Picayune’s T.J. House, the future sure seems bright.

In case you missed it, House, a former all-state and Dandy Dozen standout at Picayune Memorial High, is in his first season with the Cleveland Indians. The 24-year-old left-handed pitcher has made nine appearances, including eight starts. He stands just 1-2 on the year, with an earned run average of just over 4.00.

But House is a valuable commodity in the majors, because he is a solid southpaw that gets hitters out. Those hurlers are always in need to various teams.

He has notched almost a double-digit figure in starts, despite enduring a bit of a roller-coaster ride this season. He has basically split the season between Cleveland and Triple A Columbus due to various roster moves made by the Indians. Cleveland is above .500 for the fourth straight year at the all-star break, and the Indians are right in the mix at this point for a postseason berth.

And House has been one of the reasons for that success.

For the most part, even in the games where he was tagged with the loss or took a no decision, he kept his team in the game. And in some of those starts, he delivered solid outings in a starting role when manager Terry Francona’s team was in dire need of just such a performance.

“He’s pitched well enough to have more than one win,” Francona, who led the Boston Red Sox to a pair of World Series titles, said. “He’s shown he can get major league hitters out. He’s got a lot of poise out there.”

At times when he has been recalled to the big leagues, the Indians bullpen had been taxed over the last several games and House’s job was to produce a quality start and eat up some innings in the process and give his team a chance to win.

That’s exactly what he has done in his first taste of action in the majors.

And at the all-star break, I see even more of the same ahead for the former Tidesman.