Lyles Still Learning

Lyles will try to improve for 2012.

Jordan Lyles' greatly anticipated first major league season is likely over, manager Brad Mills said Monday before the Astros' 5-4 win over the Cardinals. The learning process for the 20-year-old rookie is ongoing.

It's continuing off the field -- he picked up a copy of "Randy Johnson Power Pitching" -- and in the bullpen, where the sessions will continue with pitching coach Doug Brocail.

Because of what Mills said would "in a perfect world" turn out to be Lyles' final outing, Lyles went to work in the bullpen to try to correct some mechanics from the 17-pitch, 14-ball performance and will pitch another bullpen on Wednesday. That final outing closed a relief portion of his season -- instituted because of an innings limit -- that featured a 12.46 ERA with six runs allowed in 4 1/3 innings over five outings. Even though that won't be Lyles' role come next season, he's still not pleased.

"That's not an excuse for me to give up as many runs as I have; I've just not been throwing good pitches," Lyles said. "It's all on me. I've got to do a better job of getting outs."

Lyles finished the year 2-8 overall with a 5.36 ERA. After Wednesday, he plans to go back to his native South Carolina for the usual pre-spring training workout routine.

As for reading the book about Johnson, a left-handed power-pitcher, what could Lyles, a finesse pitcher who throws right-handed, learn?

"I'm not going to be Randy Johnson, but I've always got an ear open to what they're saying, such great pitchers like Randy Johnson, Nolan Ryan," Lyles said.

"Whatever they have to say I'm going to have an ear open for it, and hopefully I can put it in my game somehow."

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