CHIPALATTA

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Quick Discussion: Buchanan vs. Wojciechowski


by Dan Peschong

Weird how potential topics come up for blog postings….this one came up just because of a previous article by Chip on the Rule 5 draft.

It bothered me that Jake Buchanan, who I had perceived as having good value to the Astros was not put on the 40 Man Roster and thus was placed at risk of being picked up by another organization. Luckily, Jake successfully made it through and the team has kept a potential future starting pitcher or at least a solid chip to pair up in a future trade.

When I was looking up Buchanan’s recent stats one of the things that struck me was the similarity of those stats to another minor league pitcher – one who was protected on the 40 Man Roster – Asher Wojciechowski.

Both guys pitched at AA and AAA last season. Wojalphabet was 2-1 with a 2.08 ERA at Corpus before spending the majority of the season at OKC posting a 9-7 and a 3.56 ERA.

Jake the Snake spent more time at CC with a 7-2 record and a 2.09 ERA before finishing the season at OKC with a 5-5 record and a 3.89 ERA.

Considering Buchanan is almost a year younger than Asher W. – it made me wonder what criteria was used to pick which one to expose and which one to protect.  (Yes, this is not exactly Sophie’s Choice – but I am supposing that it was not an easy decision). So here are some thoughts on each.

The case for Wojciechowski

  • Asher did show better numbers after his promotion to AAA. Perhaps the fact that he was giving up 7.8 hits / 9 IP vs. Buchanan’s 10 caught some eyes.
  • He has consistently been a better strikeout pitcher than Buchanan averaging above 7 per 9 IP vs. Jake’s below 6 for each of their minor league careers.
  • Woj has been excellent in both 2012 and 2013 – with ERAs of 3.09 and 3.32 respectively and a WHIP below 1.2 both seasons, while Buchanan struggled in 2012 with a 5.25 ERA and a 1.588 WHIP.

The case for Buchanan

  • In 2012 – Buchanan spent basically the whole year at AA ball while a year younger than Asher W. who spend 2/3 of the year at A+ ball before being traded from Toronto and being placed at Corpus.
  • Buchanan has shown superior control for a young pitcher. He has averaged 1.8 BB/9 in the minors including a sparkling 1.3 in 2013. He has also averaged 3.11 K/BB so far – with an extremely good 4.50 in 2013. Woj is okay in these categories – 2.5 BB/9 in his career – 2.9 last season and 2.85 K/BB ratio in his career and 2.37 in 2013.
  • Jake Buchanan sounds like he should be a starting pitcher. Actually he sounds like he should be the next QB for the Texans – but I digress. Asher Wojciechowski sounds like he should be a bowler who stars in the sequel to the Big Lebowski.

Maybe this one came down to the anti-Moneyball test – what the scouts eyeballs reported or the radar guns recorded. So, what do you think – did the team protect the right guy?

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About Dan P

Dan Peschong is a full time engineer and a long time Astros lover from the days of Joe Morgan to the days of Jose Altuve.

73 comments on “Quick Discussion: Buchanan vs. Wojciechowski

  1. 1oldpro
    December 18, 2013

    Astros just traded Ryan Jackson for Jesus Guzman. Now back to our regularly scheduled programming. This has been a public service announcement. If you want to keep your backup SS you can keep your backup SS. Oh, wait…oops.

    Like

    • Dan P
      December 18, 2013

      Ryan we hardly knew thee….
      Nice Obamacare reference oldpro.

      Like

    • BrianT
      December 18, 2013

      Exactly who is our backup shortstop now?

      Like

    • Dan P
      December 18, 2013

      Brian T – must be Marwin Gonzalez – though I would not bet on it.

      Like

    • Bo Weaver
      December 18, 2013

      A dime a dozen.

      Like

  2. devin_
    December 18, 2013

    Do you remember the old commercial with Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine watching Mark McGwire where the pitchers work on their slugging because chicks dig the long ball? Well, teams dig the power arms. Look at the Cardinals. They’ve been able to put guys you’ve never heard of into the bullpen throwing 95+. Josh Fields was retained last year for his power arm. I agree Buchanan might have been a good risk for certain teams, but it’s not clear he could hold a MLB bullpen spot to any effect at this point in time.

    Like

    • Dan P
      December 18, 2013

      Truthfully, Devin – Buchanan may not have the arm to make it in the mlb – but he may have the mind. Also – with his type of stats – he might be attractive in a package for…something of value.

      Like

  3. BrianT
    December 18, 2013

    Anti-Moneyball theory: Asher’s got a pretty girlfriend. Shows his confidence.

    I think we were lucky Buchanan made it through the Rule 5 draft. He’d have been pretty easy to hide in a bullpen.

    Like

    • Dan P
      December 18, 2013

      Brian T – I like how you are thinking here. So Art Howe (who was trashed in that movie) would be sending his scouts out to scout the girlfriends along with the pitcher? She must really love him or think he is going to make it big – because who else would be interested in a last name that would win at Scrabble?
      Again – it is good to still have Buchanan because he is an asset and like Morey has done with the Rockets – you get enough good assets – sometimes you can turn them into very good assets.

      Like

  4. 1oldpro
    December 18, 2013

    Asher is considered to have two major league pitches and one that is getting there. The reason he was protected is that he is rated #12 in our prospects and Buchanan is not in the top 30. Buchanan’s high hit rate and low SO rate does not project him to be able to handle major league hitters. I like Jake but he spent the entire year pitching out of jams. He did great doing that but he did it against AA batters and scouts don’t think he can do that in the majors unless he suddenly finds some better movement on his pitches.

    Like

    • Dan P
      December 19, 2013

      Thanks for the scouting report oldpro – it is great to get better info to get better insight.

      Like

  5. daveb
    December 19, 2013

    One thing about Wojosk. When he was sent to OKC, he threw more off speed pitches, working to make the breaking ball and change better NL offerings. That got his walk rate up a bit. I think we’re going to see a guy in ST that is ready to compete for a rotation slot.

    Like

    • Dan P
      December 19, 2013

      That is a real good point – Wojalphabet’s walk rate was up last year vs. his average and the fact that they are having him work on third pitch explains it. I would love to have this young guy break with the big team this spring.

      Like

  6. daveb
    December 19, 2013

    Guzman was a good deal.

    Wallace, assuming we start the season with him, is terrible against lefties.

    .212/.264/.306/.570

    Guzman?

    .286/.358/.460/.818

    We have the makings of a credible platoon at first if Wallace sticks.

    These are the little moves that assure me Luhnow knows what he’s doing.

    Like

    • Tim
      December 19, 2013

      I have always felt good about Luhnow as our GM. It is my guess in about 5 years he is going to be recognized as one of the top GMs in the game, if not the top GM. The way he turned around a moribund farm system in 2 years is anything, but amazing.

      Like

    • Dan P
      December 19, 2013

      Good stat insight daveb – put that with Wallace’s .787 OPS against righties and you have a decent platoon. I do think Luhnow has a long term and a short term plan – which is not what we had very often in the past.

      Like

      • BrianT
        December 19, 2013

        Ed Wade and Tim Purpura: “Wait! We’re allowed to make a plan? We didn’t know that!”

        Like

      • Dan P
        December 19, 2013

        I will also say that a decent share of the turn around to the farm system should be credited to Ed Wade.
        His trades brought in folks that have been to the bigs like Oberholtzer, Cosart, Zeid, and Clemens, and good minor league prospects like Singleton, Santana and Stoffel.
        His recent drafts picked up Keuchel, Buchanan, Springer, Foltynewicz, Tropeano and Deshields Jr among others.
        When he was allowed (or told) to go into rebuilding mode – he did start the turn around.

        Like

    • devin_
      December 19, 2013

      Are those his career splits against lefties? In 2013 he was .245 / .309 / ..381 / .690.

      Like

      • Dan P
        December 19, 2013

        Yeah – looking it up those were his career splits against lefties. Last year was not good but not God awful.

        Like

      • daveb
        December 20, 2013

        But on the other hand, if he approaches his 2011, 2012 splits against lefties, the deal will be a steal.

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  7. 1oldpro
    December 20, 2013

    Look at it from another viewpoint. If Wallace or Singleton platoon w/ Guzman at 1B and hit 10 points below their career splits against opposite handers, our first base horror from last year is gone. We were awful at 1B last year, along with DH.

    Like

    • daveb
      December 20, 2013

      Yep oldpro, and Luhnow got the guy for almost nothing. I’m a proponent for upping (significantly) spending on payroll, but what we’ve got now solves an immediate need at first for a lot less money than any of the FA options that were/still are out there. No reason not to expect an .800 plus OPS from the position this year, assuming a platoon is used.

      Like

      • 1oldpro
        December 20, 2013

        Dave, did you hear how this trade developed? When Luhnow claimed Jackson off waivers, San Diego also claimed him but the Astros had first dibs. Because SD showed interest, Luhnow called them and started negotiating for him, but SD did not want to give up Guzman. Finally, after a week or so, they did.

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  8. daveb
    December 20, 2013

    Did not know that. Again, outside of the Feldman deal, I’ve got no complaints about what Luhnow has done, unless we go back to Nate Freiman, but that’s old news.

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    • Dan P
      December 20, 2013

      Good discussion guys. Interesting info on how the trade came down, old pro.
      And daveb – I love it when GMs make lots of incremental upgrades. You win enough small deals and before you know it you have a better team.

      Like

  9. daveb
    December 20, 2013

    Dan, I think we’re going to see a few more of those incremental deals, which will hopefully turn out to be upgrades. For instance, I don’t think Marwin Gonzalez will be our fall back guy at short. And I’m not ruling out a significant move before the roster is set. What if Choo/Boras don’t get what they want? Does he sign a one year deal for 20 million?

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  10. Astro45
    December 20, 2013

    I agree with every deal so far. Not to live in the past, but I wished that Luhnow had made similar deals last year. Yes, it might have only added 2-5-10 more wins, but that is what these deals look like. I think we are one year behind where we could have been. Still don’t think any huge blockbusters need to be made, nor should have been made yet. Perhaps by 2016, but it was a deep hole to start with.

    Like

  11. Dan P
    December 21, 2013

    Boras will hold for awhile – but eventually I think he’ll get Choo a multiyear contract at less per year and less years.
    Yes I wish they had done some of these deals last year – but he is following a plan and I’ll accept that.

    Like

  12. rj1953
    December 21, 2013

    yes these are the kind of deals we need at this point in the rebuilding process. they are really stop gap measures as we sort out who continues to rise through the system and become part of the ‘core’. they do improve the team, but only enough to prevent another 100 loss season. dont be surprised if some go via trade during the year. we are still a year or two away from making the big splash so many are looking for. they wont commit that kind of money until we are close enough to make us a contender.

    Like

    • 1oldpro
      December 21, 2013

      So this would be okay? Do just enough to avoid a fourth straight 100 loss season?
      Can you imagine wooing a free agent with that line? Can you imagine getting any kind of decent performance out of five major league starting pitchers for 162 games with a goal like that? That is against everything I have been taught in 55 years following baseball. Play to win!
      That kind of stuff really irritates me.

      Like

  13. Becky
    December 21, 2013

    Rangers signed Choo for $130 mill. over seven years. THAT might just come back and bite ’em in the rear end…..

    Like

    • rj1953
      December 21, 2013

      i agree becky. that contract will be a bad one the last 3-4 years.

      Like

    • Bo Weaver
      December 21, 2013

      Or not.

      Choo is a legit table-setter. And it’s the modern, post-steroids era in MLB where the truth is “you gotta pay to play”.

      OBP ahead of power, in this day and age, is extremely valuable… and expensive.

      Advantage Rangers. They’ve ponied up, and will compete quite well.

      Like

      • Billy Castillo
        December 21, 2013

        Third time I’ve said this… his obp is negated by his high strikeout totals. Why? Because in our weaker lineup he’d be getting much fewer ‘good’ pitches. It would’ve been very likely that his obp would be lower than his norm, and his strikeout total would’ve risen. For the Rangers, he’s probably worth the money. For the Astros, no.

        Like

      • devin_
        December 21, 2013

        I still don’t think he’s worth the money for anyone at that length of contract. His OBP is great, but I suspect he approximates closer to Nate McClouth’s production each year into the contract.

        Like

  14. rj1953
    December 21, 2013

    they will be playing to win. just not with 100 million dollar contracts until it is time. if you dont like the strategy talk to Luhnow. if a team in texas signs choo it will be the rangers who are close to contending. take it easy op dont stroke out cuz you dont get your way.

    Like

  15. 1oldpro
    December 21, 2013

    Playing to not lose 100 games is not playing to win. You said it. You are the one who is happy with a team losing.
    I have spent the last year recovering from a stroke, so Yeah, I’m trying not to stroke out. I don’t want to see the Astros try to get under 100 losses. I want to see them win. And they aren’t going to win with just rookies and Brett Wallace. What is the use of rooting for a team if you don’t really want them to win?
    If the Astros are playing to win, what do you think the Rangers are doing by signing Choo, playing to lose?

    Like

  16. rj1953
    December 21, 2013

    i apologize about the stroke out comment op, it was not necessary. i hope you recover fully and remain healthy. but if you read my comment alittle more closely i said “at this point in the rebuilding process”. you could sign choo and garza and maybe another big name and not contend this year. what luhnow is doing is following the plan as stated when first hired. repair the minors, get an abundance of talent in the minors, begin to replenish the major league team from within, and when you are close (and we arent close as yet) then sign the one or two players that put you over the top to contend. and what i am saying isnt i am happy with the team losing, i am agreeing with luhnow and the moves he has made and sticking to the plan. again if you dont like the strategy talk to luhnow, i have no say so, but i do agree with sticking to the plan and seeing it come to fruition in a couple of more years. the rangers are hoping to win with the choo signing, but i believe at the backend of that contract they not be getting the bang for their buck. again i hope you regain your health and have many years without problem. and yes i do believe the team we field will be playing to win, whoever is on it.

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  17. 1oldpro
    December 21, 2013

    Dear Jim: Now that you have spent $600 million for your team, our advice to you is to rid your team of anyone who costs money and sign fringe players for, say, five years or so. You will probably lose 100 games for several years and lose 90 or more for a few more, but by the time all your longtime fans have passed on you will be able to field a team of youngsters who may play great by 2018. Your fans will love this strategy and will flock to the ballpark and watch you on television because they know that you have a plan to win in the kinda not so distant future.
    Leave the good players alone and build your team on cheap players and you will endear yourself to your community. God Bless!
    Sincerely.
    Your fellow MLB owners

    Like

  18. rj1953
    December 21, 2013

    Dear Jim,

    Welcome to major league baseball! Now some people may tell you to do something crazy like hire that Luhnow guy from St. Louis that helped to build championship teams with good drafts and young players. What he will want to do is try to build one of the best minor league systems in all of baseball that will eventually get you to the point where you have talent coming through all levels of the pipeline year after year. He will try to convince you that not only will this will enhance your ability to make trades using some of these prospects, but replenish the major league team from within as well. Come on, a sustainable pipeline of good young players and a manageable payroll that allows you to make the big trades and/or free agent signings that do put you over the top when the team does get to that point? haha! What you really need to do now that you have a team is throw around big money, lots of big money. Young players will do you no good, just ask the A’s. I mean look, for just under half a billion you can sign Cano and Choo and Garza. It wont make that much difference in terms of winning your division this year and most likely hamstring your organization budget-wise for years to come, not to mention block some of these good young players coming up, but wouldnt it just feel sooo good.

    signed

    S. Boras

    Like

    • daveb
      December 21, 2013

      1953, if you want to use St. Louis as an example, they are the best one. They have continually kept a solid minor league system in place, continually spent a realistic amount of money on payroll, and always remained relevant. I’ll say this again. If Luhnow is continually forced to work with a dismal payroll, one that does not allow him to win, he’ll go somewhere else. Competing is not going to be enough for him. He can work his tail off and build the best minor league system in the game, but without a payroll, a minor league system alone is not going to make this club relevant.

      Like

  19. 1oldpro
    December 21, 2013

    Dear Jim: The way your team was streaking hot at the end of last year, it’s good to see you maintaining the course. Adding that center fielder to the same fine unit you finished up with last year will continue to produce the desired effect. Don’t forget to keep those apple pie prospects in that oven in OKC. It’s better to burn them there than tip over the apple cart you’ve got going in our Minute Maid Park.
    How are you doing on our request for the 30,000 seats for your first home game with us? I promise you we will fill your empty seats.
    Well, gotta go. I’m busy trying to tie up all the good players with long term contracts, so that when you are ready to sign one they won’t be available. Oops. nobody metioned that? Well, you are hard to communicate with.
    Give my love to Jeff.
    THANKS!!
    Jon Daniels

    Like

    • rj1953
      December 21, 2013

      thanks jon, say hello to nolan for me.

      Like

  20. Bo Weaver
    December 21, 2013

    Astros cannot, and will not, be able to compete with the Rangers in this market. Not now, not in 5 years, and not in the decades to come.

    It’s the reality of the situation. Otherwise, Merry Christmas everybody! (:

    Like

  21. Astro45
    December 21, 2013

    I must add that in 2014 – it will be 9 years since the World Series. It has been 6 years since a .500 team. When someone talks patience, I am reminded of Ross Perot being paid to get off General Motors board because he had no patience.
    (“I could never understand why it takes six years to build a car when it only took us four years to win World War II”),

    Like

  22. rj1953
    December 21, 2013

    good point astro45, but how many of those years has Luhnow been here?

    Like

  23. Astro45
    December 21, 2013

    RJ1953 – Luhnow has been here since December 2011. Unfortunately, I have been here since the Houston Buffalos. So I just want the team to get to .500. Then that would be my benchmark for “competing.” Fully expect this team to be better than 111 losses, but how hard is it to beat that mark. It may not be his fault, but it is his job.

    Like

  24. rj1953
    December 21, 2013

    hi astro45. it was a rhetorical question. my point was, he has been here for 2 years, he cant be held accountable for the last 9. it is his job and i believe he is doing it well. the houston buffalos? i dont go back that far. i do go to the 45’s and had an entry in the name change contest. (my entry along with about a gillion others was the comets) i’d like to hear about the buffalos, i am sure others would be curious as well. were they the precursor to the 45’s? as far as our present team, i dont think we will reach .500 this year. i think it will be another evaluation and shakeout year. however i think the improvement will really get traction in 2015.

    Like

    • daveb
      December 21, 2013

      We should be called the Zombies.

      Like

    • Astro45
      December 22, 2013

      It was a different world (imagine explaining to your kids or grandkids about life before computers or smart phones) The only way to “see” a major leaguer was on his way up in the Texas League. Buffalos were a St. Louis AA farm team. So we would go see a couple games in Houston, and a couple games in Beaumont. But the best way was to listen to Loel Passe. He told us about how we were the best team and if we lost – “they were lucky.” Radio was it. Sorry for the nostalgia here, but wanted to share a story from about a 5 year old boy, listening to the Mutual Game of the Day. Dodgers were playing, and someone beaned Jackie Robinson. He was out for several minutes. I kept asking, why did they hit him, and my father and grandfather kept saying “Because he is Jackie Robinson.” It was years later that I learned he was black, that was why they literally tried to kill him. A different world.

      Like

      • rj1953
        December 22, 2013

        thanks for that astro45. loel passe was the best. jackie robinson was a great man.

        Like

      • 1oldpro
        December 22, 2013

        I remember the Buffs but not Passe. I became a fan of Houston after attending Game #2 in Colt 45’s Stadium.
        My family listened to the national radio game broadcasts and the fights on the radio. My earliest sports memories are of the Floyd Patterson-Ingemar Johannsen title fights and my Uncle watching his beloved Yankees on Saturday afternoons announced by Dizzy Dean.

        Like

      • rj1953
        December 22, 2013

        i have some of those exact same memories oldpro. dizzy dean was a hoot and i liked pee wee reese as well.

        Like

  25. daveb
    December 21, 2013

    I think the Rangers got a good deal. And we’ll find out. Too bad It won’t be here watching Choo in our park.

    I’m a bit flummoxed by the folks here who continually lobby to keep the 4th largest city in the nation with the smallest payroll in the game. Heck, if they had signed Choo, we’d still be looking at a paltry 60 million a year in salaries.

    Yes you can grow a great minor league system and still have a competitive payroll. Some of the people here, writing week in and week out about saving the payroll until we are ready to compete is downright ludicrous.

    Here’s a simple formula:

    1. Continue to build the minor league system.
    2. Spend 100 million a year in payroll.

    Here’s a few benefits:

    1. Become competitive immediately.
    2. Become credible immediately.
    3. Draw 2 million plus immediately.

    I know it’s a tough concept for some to absorb, much less embrace, but for goodness sake, we’ve been so crappy for so long that some of you actually support our appalling lack of spending and are willing to talk about what 500K guy will be our back up shortstop. We should be ashamed.

    Like

    • Billy Castillo
      December 22, 2013

      I think this upcoming season and especially the following off season will tell the tale. The team should’ve been torn apart after 2006; the late season run that year was really the worst thing that could have happened longterm.
      I think 2014 will see an improved record. If we have 65-70 wins I will call that a success. Then, we should be spending serious cash to fill the holes. If course, that means we need to start calling up our serious prospects like Springer and Singleton. We need to see who is going to be our nucleus going forward. Big $ free agents arent going to help us in that regard, and neither is signing scrubs like Cedeno, Pena, Ankiel, ect.

      Like

      • Becky
        December 22, 2013

        Billy……….I don’t *want* to just settle for 65-70 wins, but if that’s the best they can do I guess I’ll have to take it,but I agree with your other points.

        Like

      • Billy Castillo
        December 22, 2013

        Oh, I don’t want to settle for that either, don’t get me wrong. I just feel that anything less will be a disappointment…if we get at *least* that we’ll be heading in the right direction.

        Like

      • 1oldpro
        December 22, 2013

        The reason big money free agents won’t help us is that because they sign with our rivals who then beat us up like boxing dummies.

        Like

    • Becky
      December 22, 2013

      We will see a LOT of Choo in our park………….

      Like

    • Sandy
      December 22, 2013

      It’s not a tough concept to absorb. It’s the absolute truth.

      Spending everything on the draft will never make this team competitive and holding them down in OC while they continually age ain’t helping either.

      Like

  26. daveb
    December 22, 2013

    Billy C., not to single you out, but if anyone calls 65 to 70 wins a success, then we’ve developed a warped sense of what being successful is.

    And for those who think our farm system will lead us to the promised land, that’s a mistake too. Most of the guys on our top 20 prospect list will have unremarkable MLB careers, if they get that far. We talk about “when” Singleton “will be ready”. He might not ever be ready. The reality is that most prospects, even the highly ranked ones do not end up having distinguished careers. That’s reality.

    I hesitate to say this, but in spite of sounding like a broken record called Negativity, bopert, has been sadly accurate to date. And that’s a damn shame.

    Like

    • Bo Weaver
      December 22, 2013

      And it’s going to get worse before it gets better. How? Because it’ll take two more years before everyone realizes that mediocrity will be the norm.

      Springer will be a superstar. A few young pitchers may emerge to become legit pros. I decent TV deal may come together. But, all told, it won’t be nearly enough.

      It’s just impossible to compete in the ALWest, and in a market that is DOMINATED by the Rangers. In a couple years, the undeniable reality will set in…

      Like

      • Billy Castillo
        December 22, 2013

        For all your hatred of Jim Crane and your love for the Rangers….the way the Nolan Ryan situation was handled was a very Crane thing to do.

        Like

      • Bo Weaver
        December 22, 2013

        Don’t “hate” Crane, or anybody for that matter. But he is an undisputed shyster, and he just ruined my once-beloved NL Astros. And, admittedly, I hope he fails miserably.

        And I don’t like the Rangers one iota. Their games are available on TV, and I still don’t watch ’em, even with the sound off. But it’s true, they OWN the regional market. No two-ways about it.

        I have jumped on the Cincinnati Reds’ bandwagon, and will watch Cubs games from time to time. I miss JD and Brownie, I miss my team being able to compete year in and year out, and I miss the Round Rock Express being the AAA affiliate for the Astros.

        It’s not negativity. It’s just my opinion. It’s my take that the whole thing is ruined beyond repair.

        Seasons greetings and prosperity to all. (And I’m not talking about the Astros 2014 campaign, either.)

        Like

    • Billy Castillo
      December 22, 2013

      Again, its a relative success. If we follow that with being at or near .500 the following year, and follow that with a winning record and being in the wild card hunt, well, wouldn’t you be happy with that?

      Like

      • Becky
        December 22, 2013

        Yeah….I would be “happy” with that, for a year or two……….but start winning or face losing your ENTIRE fan base. Nolan Ryan’s big ego cost him his job, but it remains to be seen how Crane will handle getting rid of Luhnow, or Bo Porter.

        Like

      • Billy Castillo
        December 22, 2013

        Oh , definitely. It needs to be a consistent improvement. And as bad as a 70 win record is, it’s a 19 win improvement. Point is, we need to have a winning record within 2-3 years. More importantly, we need to *keep* the players we have that turn out to be good. Look at the 1991 Astros…if we had kept Lofton and put Schilling in the rotation where he belonged (just to name two) who knows what could’ve happened a few years later.

        Re: Ryan… I lived in Alvin for five years until losing my home two months ago. He is *not* well liked around there at all.

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      • daveb
        December 22, 2013

        No.

        Like

      • Billy Castillo
        December 22, 2013

        Dave…so what do you expect? Immediately increase the payroll to over $100 million and say to hell with it? Ask the Angels how well they enjoyed this past season. We’re trying to be realistic here. You know what teams struggled for years until becoming long term powerhouses? The Braves and the Yankees. We like to think the latter got back to prominence by big spending, but it started with the farm. Then, when the time came, money was spent to KEEP their developed talent. They spent money on free agents to STAY on top. You don’t spend big money to get there. If you do, you have a couple of good years before the inevitable fire sale.

        We do need to add a couple of other people before the season starts (namely another starter and a SS), but this club is a bit better than last year at the very worst. Maybe we should do a position by position comparison from last year up this upcoming year….

        Again, by 2015 we need to be making significant strides.

        Like

  27. Becky
    December 22, 2013

    I don’t usually start my festive drinks, before Christmas Eve……but that might change after reading the last few comments!

    Like

    • Astro45
      December 22, 2013

      Becky, I had to give up drinking 28 years ago because of ….. well my drinking….. so pour one for me and have a wonderful Christmas everyone. Love reading each and everyone’s blogs and comments.

      Like

  28. Dan P
    December 22, 2013

    OK – I’m on the road so I have not been able to comment.
    – Sorry, but after winning 51 games is there something wrong with hoping for 70 this year? It’s not like I want them to top out at 70 wins.
    – I’m not on suicide watch over Choo. He’s a good player but we did not miss out on the player of the century.
    – I’m not giving up on the team long term. I would rather they were already rebuilt but they are not.

    Like

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This entry was posted on December 18, 2013 by in Astros.
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