Archive for January, 2013

1/23/13: Let’s Compare New Astro Erik Bedard And Old Astro Mike Hampton

Wednesday, January 23rd, 2013

OK, they are both male. They are both left handed. They just finished nice juicy contracts (OK, Hampton’s was bigger) and after being hurt most of the previous like 3 years, were reduced to signing with the Astros for very little money, hoping to make some sort of comeback and get lucky enough to get traded to a contendah at the tradeline.

Bedard claims to be 6-1 and Hampton pretends to be 5-10. Hampton at least had 7 seasons of throwing at least 30 games before he first got hurt at age 32. Bedard has had one year in his career in which he threw at least 30 games – he started 33 and pitched 196 innings. Hampton was too injured to pitch from 06 to 08 (joined the Astros in 09, but Bedard, at least, has pitched SOME over the past 2 years. Bedard has a minor league contract, but Hampton signed a 2 mill ML deal.

He came up with Baltimore, and after his 5th year, in which he threw 182 innings of 146 ERA+ ball, the Orioles traded him to the hard luck Mariners for Adam Jones and George Sherrill (the really fat lefty reliever/LOOGY/closah) and change.

Bedard threw only 15 games over 81 IP with a 116 ERA+ after the Mariners rewarded him with a nice fat contract for 7 mill/year for 2008, 9 and 10. He threw 15 games over 83 innings for a 141 ERA+ in 2009 and missed half of 09 and all of 2010 with a shoulder injury.

They gambled, resigned him in 2011 for a mill and he gave them 16 games, 91 innings of 109 ERA+ ball and got hisself traded to the bad luck Red Sox at the deadline, threw 8 games over 38 innings – yes you read that right – and let’s say he didn’t do them any favors in their infamous September collapse.

He signed as a FA with the Pirates last year for 4.5 mill (their FA signings never work out, do they), was their Opening Day starter, remember? threw 25 games over 129 innings with a 74 ERA+ which, by the way, was his worst showing in the majors (except for his first cup of coffee at age 23.) They released him at the end of August – and at the time, they were short of pitchers and desperately trying not to have another losing season. To no avail.

I guess this means that Dallas Keuchel will be either at AAA or out on his ass. Not that I’m surprised at all this signing of retreads. If you remember, the AAA pitchers were beyond awful last year. Remember Edgar Gonzalez and Armando Galaragga?
Yeh, Ida wanna neither. Here we go again.

1/22/13: Guess Who Is The Face Of The Astros?

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Well, today I was at the home of someone who has satellite, which means they have the MLB Network, which they didn’t even KNOW (imagine THAT??!!) and on one of the shows they asked the question – who is the face of the Astros? Must have been posted somewheres on the astros dot com page, where maybe 2 dozen people saw it, because that appears to be the number of replies they got, judging by the percentages, which was a couple of guys at 8%, a couple of guys at 4% and a couple of guys at 2% and

the WINNAH

Jose Altuve at 68% – you note it WASN’T Biggio, who got 8% and Bagwell wasn’t even named. Bud Norris, now the Most Respected Exalted Veteran Commanding The Team High Salary – of 3 mill a year!!! drat that horrid union and their icky arbitration making Crane give some of that 85 mill he gonna be getting to the players – what an outrage!!!!!

where was I?

Oh yeah – Bud got 8% as did Biggio – Justin Maxwell, Luhnow and Kevin Goldstein got 4% and Julio Daniel Martinez got 2% and yes there were some other guys but just like the rest of the universe, I’ve forgotten who they are.

They then interviewed Bo Porter, seeing as how the Token Female they had on the show (thank GAWD she isn’t another slutty looking blond) couldn’t think of anything to say bout Jose. Or any other Astro or the Organization, for that matter. Just like the rest of the universe. So they had Bo Porter on as a (telephone) guest and naturally, he mentioned how “excited” he is about the team. That appears to be an Organization “Key Word To Always Be Spoken In Every Sentence To The Media” thingy this year – sort of like the old days of Killah Bees.

Anyway, Bo managed to contain his “excitement” enough to talk about his life history and how with the DH he doesn’t have to worry about thinking about his lousy bullpen – or something like that. Don’ worry Bo, ain’t hardly nobody else thinkin bout it neither.

Of course I’m wondering how many “fans” actually showed up at the usual Astros “Caravans” in Houston, let alone anywheres else. During the good years, the veterans and stars almost nevah dirtied their hands and noses by showing up at those – it was always the nobody vets and the rooks who were not stars. This year, they have Altuve and

um

er

whoever. Good time to get autographs, seeing as how their poor lil hands won’t be as tired as their asses.

You know the Astros are seriously lousy when then object to a Big Star like Fernando Martinez going off to play for – I forget who – Antarctica or Peru or something. Really, Luhnow expressed his unhappiness publically. Wonder how long it took for Buddy Boy to get on the phone and tell Crane to rein in his bigmouth dissing Buddy Boy’s Pet Project. Luhnow says they need to see him in ST to evaluate him. ORLY? Like, WHAT is it they missed in his few lousy months up here? But he’s “competing” for the LF spot with Proven Veteran Rick Ankiel. 

Can this team lose 120 games???

Three weeks to PACR.

Oh yeah – I forgot. MLB network is supposed to be so superior to BBTN. Let me put it this way – any network that employs Mitch Williams as anything other than a janitor gots no business thinkin of itself as “superior” seeing as how he makes Hawk Harrelson look intelligent and well-spoken.

Wonder why it seems that almost every ballplayer, as soon as he retires, turns into a whining, complaining grumpy old man who, back in HIS days, Men Were Men and this means they all worked like Dogs, never sinned and Knew How To Play The Game The Right Way (still don’t know what way that exactly IS, but it appears to be something that is done only by each successive generation as it has just retired). Too bad couldn’t nobody seem to take a lesson from Stan Musial, who might could have gotten old, but never caught the Whining Grouch Disease.

I love hearing stories about The Man. Never claimed to be bettern everyone else, or A Leadah, or Requiring Only Purple M and Ms, 100 in each bowl, before agreeing to pose for autographs, then leaving after the photographers did. Never put others down. Didn’t shut his eyes to Evil and pretend it wasn’t happening. Apologised for his friends’  transgressions. And, best I know, is what Joe Paterno pretended to be.

I don’t expect other ballplayers to be Stan, either as The Man or the man, unlike the media, but I know it is really great to know that there were and are people like Stan. May he rest in peace.

 

1/17/13: Crane Spends Big On Proven Veteran Rick Ankiel

Thursday, January 17th, 2013

Remember how I groused when Phil Garner collected all those ex-Tigers?
And when Fast Eddie grabbed all those worn out ex-Phillies?

Well, looks like Luhnow is repeating the same ol same ol. If some ballplayer came from the Cards at any time in the past, ol Jeffy-poo gonna get all googoo eyed.

Now it’s the remnants of Rick Ankiel. The guy who was gonna be an ACE when he came up in 99 at age 20. Who caught the lethal version of Steve Blass Disease during the playoffs, tried every cure including TJ surgery, and reinvented himself as an outfielder.  He came back, finally, in 07, posted an .863 OPS over 47 games, as a very good centerfielder. He played in 120 games each of the next 2 years – lots of platooning in there, but he got about 400 ABs each year, and had a .843 OPS (120 OPS+) but fell to a .678 (77 OPS+) the next. He’s very prone to strikeout, about 25% of PA. In fact, his only really good year was 08 and he’s declined significantly ever since.

Cards didn’t want him back after 09, no surprise, and he signed with the Royals, had a Jeff Francoeur style dead cat bounce, and he got his self traded to Atlanta mid season, but he failed to produce. 112 ERA+ to 77. Here and I thought the DH league was the tougher one. Anyway, he spent his last 2 years with the Nats, posting a .651 OPS over 415 ABs in 2011 and a .693 OPS (8 OPS+) over 171 PA before being released in July.

I guess his suckiness would fit right in with the Astros. I suppose he’l platoon with Justin Maxwell and uh – whatshisname that crappy LF. Oh, wait. He’s a lefty, too.

sigh

I guess it is more fiscally advantageous to pay Free Agents like Ankiel minimum wage, to shove it in the Union’s face, than to play any actual minor leaguers who are ready to play. Oh, wait – we don’t HAVE any.

And now, for something completely different. On an old subject, yes. Wanted to post this wonderful posting (with just a lil editing for G-rating) from an anonymous internet poster named “KT’s Pot Arb” from Baseball Think Factory.org (yes I still manage to find a little time to go there – don’t ask me how…)

“I think players who did NOT use steroids should be punished. They cheated the game and the fans of their best efforts, and i would never allow even one of those lazy prigs into the HOF, regardless of their “natural” performance level.

When did we become such a nation of (pansies) that we celebrate guys who knock off early, did just enough to get by, and refused to risk, strive or sacrifice to win? In the old days, you took out the catcher, spiked the shortstop, threw a spitter, scuffed the ball, plunked that SOB who homered off you, and never, ever backed down from a fight or let down your teammates. If you weren’t caught trying to deceive the ump, it was because you were too busy corking your bat, or trying to get the signs stolen by the guy with binoculars in the scoreboard. If you were exhausted from a long night of (female) scouting from the top of the hotel with binoculars guy, you didn’t whine, you just took an extra handful of greenies from the big bowl in the clubhouse and went out to kick someone’s ass.

And if you got caught cheating, did the nation grasp its collective skirts, and faint? NO! You made a half assed apology knowing you had just cemented your rep as a goddam red blooded American hero, the kind any team would be happy to have, that teammates were proud to play alongside, and whose (youknowwhat) women lined up for the honor of (youknowwhat-ing)

Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds and Mark McGwire risked their health to pump themselves full of nasty black market drugs so they could work out twice as often and twice as hard as those gutless, talentless, punks who got by giving their absolute minimum necessary to the game. Steroid users gladly turned themselves into cartoon caricatures so they could burn their wings near the sun. They did it to break records, win games and championships, make history so you, I and all real fans could see what true greatness is. When they were out there, they showed us what real baseball is, contested out of sweat, blood, ####, piss and pain in the dust of arenas immortalized by what these greats left of themselves on that hard unforgiveing dirt..

Steroid freaks deserve our goddam respect and gratitude for what they gave us, their all regardless of the price they knew they’d have to pay. Big Mac sacrificed his mighty balls, shrunk into tiny acorns, disappearing long ago in his gigantic trunk. Bonds deformed his handsome head, Clemens, his magnificent ass. Because of the gifts they gave us, It’s unlikely any of these men will live long enough to see their grand kids play ball, but silently, stolidly, they will carry the burden of their sacrifices with honor for the rest of their short, glorious and historic lives.”

Last but not least, take a look at this list from Maury Brown, listing all the major and minor leaguers who have been CAUGHT using drugs. Check out the ones who have used actual steroids, not including Freddy Galvis’ vaginal suppository. See if you can figure out from their stats when they started using and how it really helped them hit home runs. That is, if you even recognise their names…

1/13/13: The Astros And Drugs

Sunday, January 13th, 2013

I was gonna write a little blurb bout Jonathan Singleton getting caught using that Performance Detracting Drug, Mary J Wanna, or should I say, Mary J Ida-Wanna, but I done wrote that all before last year when maroon Jordan Schafer got caught. Honestly, how swear word STUPID can you get? The Astros were almost certainly inviting him to ST and I would bet were considering calling his sorry ass up if Brett Wallace failed and now he has to not play for 2 months.

Either he has an addiction problem or is is too stupid to be believed – Mary stays in your system for MONTHS and you can have a positive piss test.

The Astros best prospect.

They don’t care about it or test for it in the MAJORS but for whatever reason, the minors cares about it even in the offseason and screwing up your entry into the MONEY is beyond stupid. Made a mistake. The usual blubbering apology – prolly look like one of my Dogz after getting caught pullin over the trash can.

NOW

to me, the big news, fortunately ignored because after all this IS Houston, bereft by the media, is that BOTH Biggio and Bagwell said that Bonds and Clemens belong in the Hall and that Bonds was the best player they’d ever seen. The Jeff Pearlmans of the world and all those gutless unnamed BBWAA voters who don’t have the guts to show their ballots to the world, well, you KNOW they are gonna use this as a tacit admission by the Killah Bs – and not vote for them again.

This stuff has simply GOT to stop. Not only is there like ZERO reason to state that either one of them was without question one of the many roid users from 88 – 04, but there is like ZERO reason to insist that they either took steroids from the beginning of their careers or to insist that neither of them could play baseball above the AA/AAA level without it, which is what I’m reading. In his rookie year he had a 139 OPS+ fer chrissakes. We all know that a guy being skinny as a pole doesn’t mean he’s not shooting up, unless he puts on muscle and then it is positive proof unless he is Junior Griffey. Baggy did indeed hit 39 homers in 110 games in 94, but then again, in 94, EVERYONE was killing the ball. Either all hitters and no pitchers were shooting up, or the BALL itself was juiced.

But let’s be real – the ONLY reason that steroids suddenly became Teh Evull/Cheating is because the Home Run Record fell. Nobody cares that the previous Amphetamine Era players broke record after record because they did not put on weight. Too many people/writers like to pretend that amphetamines do not enhance performance, which is why even freaking cold medication is banned from the Olympics. Pete Rose broke the hits record, Hank Aaron broke the (gasp) Sacred Home Run Record, Nolan Ryan blew through the K record. (Anyone else ever wonder why on earth Nolie-poo is never on the suspect list? I mean, because throwing a baseball in the mid 90s while pitching no hitters is something ordinary pitchers can do at age 46…)

The insistence that steroids cause a nobody to turn into a great home run hitter is beyond absurd. And let’s be real here – NOBODY cares about guys who used steroids unless they hit a LOT of home runs or were named Roger Clemens). It’s why you get people shrugging off the players who have actually been CAUGHT using steroids.

It’s why people would condemn any sort of steroid use in any player even if he was given them BY A SPORTS PHYSICIAN under strict supervision to heal seriously damaged muscle. I would bet just about any amount of money that no one except Jeff Pearlman would have a problem if any ballplayer toook ANY substance that permanently improved his performance as a baseball player AS LONG AS it did not increase the size of his muscles.

For example, let’s suppose that player X uses, say, saline nose spray and finds out that spraying it in his nose improves his ability to focus on the spin of the ball and that after using the spray for a year, the ability is permanent.

Did he cheat?

Let’s suppose that player Y decides to fix Vitamin C and does weekly butt injections because he found that it strengthened his wrist tendons and back tendons, allowing him to have significantly increased butt, I mean BAT speed. Besides him being an obvious homosex (I mean seriously, isn’t that why everyone is so UPSET that androgen injections are, for whatever reason, taken in the BUTT???!!!!! seeing as how you know how Those Peeple are) has he cheated?

Let’s suppose that player Z lines his jock strap with aluminum foil after giving himself an enema with capsascin powder because he finds that this significantly enhances his alertness and focus and enables him to run faster, field better and singles those balls where the fielders ain’t.

Should any of these guys have to announce his new discovery that gave him this great advantage to either other players or to the media? All of those things used are available over the counter to anyone who wants them, including toddlers. Has anyone “cheated?”

Now youse guys might could laugh and say something like IGGNERINT WIMMEN!!!!! but the point is that each one of these guys was specifically TRYING to find something to make himself a better player, some little edge, NONE of the substances he used were illegal (like androstenedione, the Clear, vit B-12). is trying to find any sort of edge not prohibited – is that a bad thing?

Should we punish/suspend all the guys who wear those metal necklace thingys because they REALLY believe that they ENHANCE PERFORMANCE by using cosmic rays/magnetic fields/radioactive spider juice? You can’t prove that metal necklaces have anything whatsoever to do with performance enhancing than you can with Human Growth Hormone, but it doesn’t stop everyone from screaming about it and demanding blood tests.

The difference between the two is that people (wrongly) think that HGH has anything whatsoever to do with increasing muscle SIZE and strength in healthy young males and that metal necklaces can’t.

1/9/13: No Baggy, No Biggio, No Body

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013

Twenty five to none, baby,
None in twenty five
No one gets IN alive

May take a year, no
It may take longer
They got the votes 
Though you got the numbers

Gonna sit, yeah,
Your ballgames are over, boys
Night is drawing near
Shadows of the evening
Crawl across the years

apologies Jim Morrison

Husband told me – go write this entry, get it out of your system. I’ll grill something. Sorry your boys didn’t make it in
(translation: we don’t hafta go to that stupid little town in the middle of nowheresville Yankeeland with nothin to do except for stand there with thumbs up butt while Wife gets all googoo eyed over Bagwell and Biggio and some stupid museum with mostly dead guys don’t even know their NAMES in it- and we get to go back to Galveston and go swimming YAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!)

Well, all those smug, self important BBWAA and all those smug, self-important HOFers who wouldn’t NEVAH have done NOTHING immoral or TOUCHED any substance or thing that might could give them any sort of improvement or edge – you think they are gonna do anything to help the museum, which has lost money the last 8 of 10 years, and will get this crowd of dozens for the induction of some guys who have been dead a hundred years that nobody but SABRites have heard of?

HAIL no.

They are too busy crowing about The Sanctity Of The Halls. Not crowing about The Poverty Of The Local Businesspeople who they just deprived of their main business week of the year.

I can’t understand voting a good but not great pitcher like Morris over Bagwell or Biggio. They are not going in, if ever, for a long LONG time, seeing as how the BBWAA’s Declared Perfect Players who could not POSSIBLY have been associated with steroids in any way, shape or form, have managed to stagger themselves every year so they can put in only the perfect. Starting with Maddux next year. I would say Frank Thomas too, but he was very large, hit a LOT of home runs, and therefore MUST be one of those damm dirty roiders. Right?

Next year comes Randy Johnson, who didn’t get to be any good until he was 30 and lasted WELL into his 40s, throwing 90+ MPH sliders – and you know it’s impossible for that to have been due to roids, right?

And so on.

Bagwell, Biggio, Lofton (who fell off the ballot – and that is because he didn’t hit enough homers for a CF, unlike The Sainted Kirby Puckett, who couldn’t possibly have used roids to suddenly increase his HR totals from 4/year to 31/year, the year BEFORE the Juiced Ball in 87) Larry Walker (often mistaken for Dante Bichette), Schilling and his bloody mouth – I mean Sock. Rock Raines, Mike Piazza (acne is like betting on baseball – right?) and Alan Trammell. And Rafe Palmeiro – don’t ask me why people believe Miguel Tejada who was on the Mitchell Report because they had RECEIPTS for his purchase of steroids.

Let alone the 2 best players of the past 50 years who are being kept out for being, uh, jerks. Or as Ken Burns and his hazy shade of Remebrance of Golden Years Past put it – teach those mother, uh, lovers – ahem – a lesson.

IT’s too stupid. it’s really TOO stupid. In the not so distant future, we’re gonna look back at the Salem Steroid Trials and honestly wonder what all the fuss was about. Just like we wonder why, now, that so many folks were so hysterical about not allowing Those Icky Negroes to play on the Nice White Ballpark Grounds For the Regular Season.
The veterans committee gonna put most of them in 20 years from now and unlike Frankie Frisch’s gang, THESE guys will be genuinely great.

You know what? I think that this IS the right year to go to the Cooperstown inductions. No problem finding a hotel room, no crowds, no bloviating Hall of Famers going on about what little choir boys they were Back In The Good Old Days.

heh

Yeh, gonna sockitto Husby-doo. No crowds this time boy, no excuse for YOU.

1/8/13: In Which Michael Bourn Can’t Find A Job And The Hof Won’t Find Visitors In Jluy

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

Well, so far, it looks as if teams are simply not interested in Michael Bourn. He turned down a 13.3 mill Qualifying Offer from the Braves, who jumped for joy, went out and immediately signed BJ Upton, forfeiting their first round pick (who is, by the way, another Boras client, so it can’t be simply a refusal to sign any Boras client…)

Thing is, apparently no other team is willing to forfeit theirs.  Any except for the Braves, who already have their brand new CF (and honestly, wasting Bourn in LF???) would forfeit their first or second rounder even if they paid Michael a 1 year minimum wage contract. Pretty much any team that is willing to spend any money found themselves some OTHER center fielder, and Arizona is trying to dump Justin Upton as they have already picked Cody Ross to replace him. Really. I swear it.

Trouble is that Justin Upton is 5 years younger than Michael, hits for more power. Michael fields better, runs better, but is no power hitter. And Justin has 3 more already cost controlled years because of the contract he signed 2 years ago, and would be cheaper than Bourn – and won’t cost a draft pick.

I’m a little surprised about the draft pick thing –  so few prospects develop, and there are very few Alex Rodriguez/Evan Longorias. Unless you are really REALLY sure your pick is a super talent, you would refuse a top notch major leaguer? I guess so. So many fans are so delighted about major leaguers getting paid less and less. I just don’t get why they want the billionaire owners to get more, and yes, I know I’ve said it before. But here you have a really excellent major leaguer who apparently isn’t going to be able to get a job, seeing how ANY salary would be too much.

The only team who can sign Bourn without giving up a pick is the Braves. They can offer him minimum wage, he can take it or leave it, and then the Braves can trade him and get a lot for a top CF who is getting minimum wage. I’ll bet the MLBPA didn’t forsee THAT happening. The union has made blunder after blunder for a good 10 years now, starting with their stupidity over the steroids. I mean, not instituting their own testing program like the superb one run by the NFL where nobody dares to touch an illegal drug.

sigh

And the screeching anti-steroid zealots who have glorified 105 ERA+ pitchers from BITGOD will get their wish – no one is going to be elected to the HOF this year in spite of the fact that there are a minimum of 10 guys on the ballot who belong. The merchants of the Cooperstown area eagerly anticipate the enormous crowd coming to see whatshisname dead guy who only SABR people who who he is. I’m sure that the actual Hall Of Famers who are screaming about OMG TEH ROIDS!!! us guys didn’t never take NOTHIN stronger than water!!!  and how they won’t have NOTHING to do with the Hall if Those Terrible Evul People get elected, are going to be sure to stay around Cooperstown all weekend, greeting fans, signing autographs, helping the economy instead of doing what the All-Star electees do, which is to come in late, stay for 2 innings, then take off in their private planes.

Way to support the good people of the Cooperstown area, you sanctimonious blowhards.

Baggy and BGO aren’t going in next year neither – that’s the year of Saints Maddux and Glavine, the guys who lived with the called strike at the knees 4 inches off the plate, who wouldn’t NEVAH touch no NOTHIN that wasn’t pure. Then there are whole lot of Pure Untouched Saints coming after them.

Hopefully, in 20 years, the veterans’ committee will have more sense.

 

1/5/13: Alan Ashby Returns To Astros Broadcasts

Saturday, January 5th, 2013

First of all, sorry no posts – my last long one about Baggy and BGO almost certainly not making the HOF along with nobody else vanished. Ridiculous – 8 absolutely no doubt superior ballplayers all deserving of the HOF, along with one of the 5 best position players and 5 best pitchers who ever played, left off most ballots.  But the writers, who haven’t needed to make a statement about “steroid era” players like Roberto Alomar and Barry Larkin, suddenly remember that hey – they have to refuse to mail in ballots, or worse, send in BLANK ballots, which count.

What if they gave a WAR and nobody came?

Why, then, the BBWAA, who closed their eyes tightly in the 80s and 90s
Would stay home when the fight over “PEDs” begins 
And let another vote and be blamed
They SHOULD care – whether or not the player rose above his ERA, but no.
He/she who does not take part
In the ballot will share in the defeat.
Even avoiding ballot will not avoid battle.
Since not to fight for your own cause 
Really means
Fighting on behalf of your enemy’s cause.

(apologies Bertold Brecht)

The excuse is that the previously ignored “character” clause is now to be used to mean whatever some voter’s prejudice entails. The pretense that no one can be properly judged against his peers is absurd. The pretense that EVERYONE who excelled should be punished is a repeat of the Salem Witch Trials. Accusation = Proof. Naturally, I have noticed that those who accuse, say, Jeff Bagwell of doing drugs (such as Jeff Pearlman) have never offered the slightest shred of genuine PROOF, merely stated that “Houston clubhouse was full of drugs and everyone knows it.”

This is beyond sorry.

They “know” that Greg Maddux, Junior Griffey and Frank Thomas were clean, like HOW? Especially Thomas, the power hitter who out of nowhere, had a superb age 39 season; the explanation is that Thomas was a vocal anti-roider. I say like beeeg deal – Preacher Ted Haggard was loudly, publically anti-gay and whaddaya know, he himself was a closet gay (and drug user, too.)

And if greenies, as illegal as roids, were so OK for the Old Timers to use because they were just like coffee and not performance enhancing at all, and put in bowls in the clubhouses, why is it that no Old Timer will admit to using them? Besides the old Bill Clinton explanation of how he didn’t inhale.

sigh

Husband isn’t real too upset, seeing as how if Baggy and BGO won’t be elected, I won’t have a stronger reason that we have to go to Cooperstown (which he has been promising me since we got married – there is always SOME reason that this year is not the right year.)

Anyway – the FO finally got something right after letting jim Deshaeis walk (he must have wanted money or something unreasonable.) Alan Ashby, who was unceremoniously thrown out on his ass at the request of Milo after the 2004 season (for interrupting Milo’s droning on about nonsense, saying terrible and offensive things like the score, the inning, the pitch count, the name of the hitter/pitcher/team.) Ash is not just a former Astro. He is a really REALLY outstanding play by play/color man who has been working for the Jays, who appreciate him.

I know Brownie will be working with (I now hate that phrase, seeing as how I can’t stop associating it with Ed Wade agreeing to “work with” Tal Smith) Ash, but am not sure who the other person will be. I don’t think it will be Alyson Footer, which is just as well because then Husband would be explaining to me how he has always been this die-hard Astros fan and can’t miss the pre-game or post-game show.

The new radio guys, best I know, will be Steve Sparks and (I think) Kevin Eschenfelter. We better hope it’s not Steve Stone, who has been worse than lousy ever since being fired from the Cubs after criticizing players for playing like garbage and getting in pointless fights etc. I DO know that Mo Ensberg, who has been broadcasting on satellite radio, will not be one of the new guys because he is now the infield coordinator with the Lancaster team.

Amazing how many guys, even guys who have plenty of money, just can’t let go of the game and go do something else with their lives. Even working some crap job in the low minors. As Bouton said – here and you thought you were gripping a baseball and all the time it was the other way around…