Let’s start this one off with the guys we KNOW will definitely make it, no question (unless there is a trade.)
Brad Lidge, age 30, RHP, closer. I hope.
Dan Wheeler, age 29, RHP, setup guy.
Chad Qualls, age 28, RHP, 7th inning guy – might could have a sore shoulder, who knows how serious. I don’t trust anyone to be honest about injuries.
Trever Miller, age 33, designated LOOGY
- now, the guys who I don’t think will be relievers if they fail to make the starting rotation
Matt Albers (who I talked about yesterday) – because I think they want him to be a starter, so he’d go back to AAA for more experience. On the other hand, they might could give him some work in the pen, as they did Roy when he started out in the majors.
Wandy Rodriguez (who I talked about yesterday) because he’s just not a reliever – ESPECIALLY if there are MOB.
Zeke Astacio (who I talked about yesterdsay) because he sucks no matter if he starts or relieves
Troy Patton ( who I talked about yesterday) – because they want him to be a lefty starter and he NEEDS some more minor league experience
Now, the minor league guys who know they aren’t gonna make the team, but were invited because of good behaviour:
Jimmy Barthmaier, age 22, RH starter. Just finished A ball – 3.62 ERA, 1.39 WHIP, 8.4K/9 IP, 4.22 BB/9 IP, 0.37 HR/ 9 IP. started 27 games, pitched 146.2 innings. beeg deeel… Someone needs to explain to me why he’s at ST and Brooks Conrad, who could be a useful switchhitting utility IF is not.
Paul Estrada, age 24, RH reliever, just finished AA. 3.05 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, pitched in 56 games over 88.2 innings. 13.6K/9 IP, 3.76 BB/9 IP, 1 HR/9 IP. Looks more useful than Barthmaier.
Juan Gutierrez, age 23, RH starter. Just finished AA – 3.04 ERA, 1.23 WHIP in 20 games over 104 IP. 9.2 K/9 IP, 2.95 BB/9 IP, 0.87 HR/9 IP. Not bad.
Felipe Paulino Del Guidice, age 23, RH starter. Just finished A ball. Not impressed – 4.35 ERA, 1.41 WHIP, 6.48 K/9, 4.21 BB/9, 0.93 HR/9 in 26 GS over 126.1 IP. I have NO idea why the Organization is impressed with this guy.
Jose Rodriguez, age 25, RH reliever (who has not yet gotten to Florida because of visa problems) He’s a 6 year minor league FA who was on the Tampa Bay AAA roster – 2.43 ERA, 1.30 WHIP – 7.54 K/9, 3.28 BB/9, o.49 HR/9 over 49 games and 74 IP. Has never played a ML game.
- and the contenders?
Miguel Asencio, age 26. The throw in in the Jennings trade (as I wrote earlier this year), signed by the Phillies as a 17 year old in 98 and was picked in the Rule V draft by the Royals in 02 – was mostly a starter – went 4-7 in 21 GS and 10 in relief over 123.1 IP (which comprises most of the ML innings he has pitched) with a 5.11 ERA; 1.62 WHIP; 1.24 HR/9; 4.67 BB/9; 4.23 K/9. Yep. Lousy. And he was just as lousy in the 48 innings he pitched the next year for the Royals. In 05, he pitched 19 innings in the Padres minor league system. He was then signed as a FA by the Rockies last year, and in AAA, he started 16 games, relieved in 22 more and, well, letís say he wasnít any good – 5.03 EA, 1.51 WHIP; 1.05 HR/9; 3.32 BB/9; 5.76 K/9 . He pitched 7.1 innings in Denver and again, he just sucked. I see absolutely ZERO evidence that this guy is any good at ALL – I suppose he is the much vaunted “long reliever” that Purpura, Phil and Drayton thought was gonna be so much better for the team than Russ Springer.
I’ll believe it when I see it.
Dave Borkowski, age 30, RHP – who I talked about yesterday
Lincoln Holzkolm, age 25, RH reliever. He’s a minor leaguer we picked up in the Rule V draft from the Cubs. He was drafted in the 7th round of the 2001 draft by the Marlins, spent a whole lot of time on the DL for the past few years, including Tommy John surgery in 04. Heís never pitched higher than the Southern League AA. Last year, he pitched 32.1 innings with a 1.95 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 2.78 BB/ 9 and 7.52 K/ 9 IP. He hasnít done quite so well this winter in the AFL, 20.1 IP over 13 games, with 3 HR, 13 BB and 21K – he gave up 19 runs, 16 earned, for a shiny 7.08 ERA. Must say that the local media sure do seem to like him – he’s already gotten 2 stories.
Mark McLemore, age 25, LHP (talked about him yesterday too. Interesting that none of the local media have so much as mentioned his name as even being at ST.)
Brian Moehler, age 35, RHP – I had to talk about him yesterday, sorry that I have to do that today again…
Fernando Nieve, age 24, RHP – discussed him yesterday
Stephen Randolph, age 32, LHP – He has pitched 147 ML innings, in 2003 and 2004 – heís been primarily a reliever, but was pressed into service as a starter by the desperately dreadful Dbax in 04. He has started 6 games, relieved in 89 more. He has 7.12 K/9 and a glorious 7.65 BB/9. Of course, Phil is drooling over him because of his low ERA in AAA Charlotte last year – 3.67, but he still gave up 6.65 BB/9 and that is in a hit happy league.
Color me unimpressed. But I guess Phil is seeing a lefty long man and drooling…
Scott Sauerbeck, age 35, LHP – wrote about him already
Kevin Walker, age 30, LHP – let’sd say he’s another AAAA guy – has logged 103 ML innings over 11 years – 4.76 ERA, 1.44 WHIP, 8.38K/9, 5.56BB/9 and 0.88 HR/9. Last time he pitched more than a few innings in the ML was 2000, when he threw 66 innings for San Diego. He’s lousy. To be nice about it.
Rick White, age 38, RHP. Wrote him up already (2/5/07)
Ok, let’s figger we’ll have 12 pitchers – 5 starters, 7 relievers
Let’s say Oswalt, Williams, Jennings, Wandy and Sampson (interesting that Richard Justice doesn’t think that either Wandy or Sampson will make the 25 man – he predicts Albers and Nieve as the 4th and 5th man…)
Relievers will be Lidge, Wheeler, Qualls, Miller
and there are 3 more spots. Now you KNOW that Phil wants a long man and another LOOGY.
Long man candidates: Asencio, Borkowski, Nieve, Holzkom (who has to go back to the Cubs if he’s not on the 25 man) Randolph and Moehler.
Loogy candidates: Randolph, McLemore, Sauerbeck and Walker
Last man: White. Maybe Estrada
So who am I guessing will make it onto the 25 man?
Borkowski, Nieve and Sauerbeck. Although I think I’d really prefer Borkowski, Estrada and McLemore – hey, be daring….
Tags: Houston Astros