10 questions for Astros’ fans

It is time again for you to prove you are the smartest readers in the blogosphere or at least smarter than this writer as you are requested to answer ten questions about the Houston home team.

  1. To a varying degree, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Carlos Correa and Yuli Gurriel all had poor offensive semi-seasons in 2020. If they all hit closer to their norm in 2021, except one, who would you choose that one to be and why?

2. Let’s say Framber Valdez comes back healthy with plenty of time before the end of the season and the Astros’ rotation is Zack Greinke, Lance McCullers Jr., Jake Odorizzi, Cristian Javier and Jose Urquidy, would you…. a) Put Framber in the bullpen?

b) Put Framber in the rotation and drop who???

c) Go to a 6 man rotation down the stretch?

3. If Justin Verlander comes back at the beginning of September, basically, the same questions as per 2) above….

4. As far as a leadoff hitter goes, would you (for the majority of ABs)…..

a) Put Myles Straw there?

b) Put Carlos Correa there?

c) Force the reluctant Jose Altuve there?

d) Put Alex Bregman there?

e) Other?

5. Let’s say Ryan Pressly misses some time due to an injury. Who would you put in the closer’s role?

6. When the Astros play NL teams in road games – what would you do with Yordan Alvarez to get him ABs?

7. In 2020, the Astros were 9-23 on the road, they were 10-14 in one-run games and they were 2-7 in extra-inning games. Which one of these is the most important area to improve?

8. Between 2019 and 2020 the Astros scoring went down from 5.68 to 4.65 runs/game. At the same time, they went from giving up 3.95 to 4.58 runs/game. Is one of these areas more important for them to improve? Do you think they will improve one, both or neither of these areas?

9. When the 2020 season is over, who will be considered the Astros best starting pitcher?

10. Michael Brantley, Yordan Alvarez, Kyle Tucker, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, Carlos Correa and Yuli Gurriel…..which one(s) make the All Star team?

11. As a bonus – you get to ask a question of me and your fellow commenters.

Enjoy…..

84 comments on “10 questions for Astros’ fans

  1. #1. Gurriel because of his age and Alvarez back at DH, not having that spot to rest Yuli.
    #2. I would replace whoever is not pitching well. If everyone is pitching well, I put Javier in the bullpen where he did so well late last season and playoffs.
    #3. If Verlander comes back in September, I put him in Sugarland first. If he is his old self there, I start him in the playoffs.
    #4. Bregman
    Altuve
    Alvarez
    Correa
    Brantley
    Gurriel
    Tucker
    Maldanado
    Leon.
    #5. If Pressly gets injured, you go with the best reliever who’s hot and on the 40-man.

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  2. 1. Yuli of course, as he’s the least productive guy in the bunch anyway.
    2. Framber will have to go into the pen to get stretched out. Got to figure it will take at least a month. And if the other starters are all effective, it’s a good problem to have Framber, a lefty, coming out of the pen.
    3. Same answer, a good problem to have.
    4. Do we know Jose is reluctant to hit first? I obviously have already chosen him to be our guy there.
    5. No one guy for closer in that case. Go with the freshest arm that matches up best against whomever is hitting.
    6. Are we really playing the Cubs seven times in July? With four games at Wrigley July 1 to 4, that’s plenty of time down the road for the decision makers to see what kind of shape Alvarez is in. If he’s healthy, he’s got to start at least two games out in left on that nice soft grass.
    7. All of the above. But that guy on second base extra inning stuff was most annoying last year. I hate that rule. So that’s my # 1 pick.
    8. We’ve got a pretty good team. We’ll improve in both areas. We’ll win 95 games. Better pitching is more important. I know we’ll score runs.
    9. Verlander.
    10. Alvarez, Tucker, Bregman, Correa.
    11. How much will a refreshing Stella Artois cost at the ballpark in 2021?

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    • Daveb – My Altuve is reluctant to leadoff statement is just me reading the tea leaves and could be totally wrong.

      11. How much will a refreshing Stella Artois cost at the ballpark in 2021?
      Well to steal from National Lampoons Vacation when Chevy Chase’s car has “crashed” in the desert and is being repaired by modern day pirates. “How much is it?” “How much have you got?”
      Maybe my reflection on the economics of baseball…..

      Liked by 1 person

      • I was sitting in a bar/restaurant in San Marcos a few yrs ago watching an Astros game. They might not even have been showing it in Rangers country if Astros hadn’t renewed in RR. There were a few Astros fans with whom I started up a conversation. One was a beer rep in the area. Surprised to find out from him, right in the heart of Shiner’s backyard that Stella Artois was, he said, the biggest selling beer in San Marcos. I dare say it was 75% cheaper there than in MMP ha!

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  3. Two bits of information…
    Greinke will be opening day pitcher – no surprise
    Bregman will make his spring debut tomorrow (Tuesday)

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  4. I’m kind of wondering about when we will see Jake Odorizzi in a game. I know that Brian McT said he may not be built up enough to begin the season in the rotation, but shouldn’t he be throwing an inning or two sometime soon to start that build up?

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  5. 1. I go with the player with the least fundamentals: Altuve. Yuli may be getting older, but he hasn’t lost a step, and he’s the best adjustment guy in that bunch which is saying something. The “norm” for Altuve was 320 hitter at one point. Do you really believe he’ll sniff that? I don’t. We’ll find out this year whether the death in his family, or whatever some are attributing to his SHARP decline. Seems possible Bregman starts very slowly too w/o many reps in Spring.

    2. Especially not hearing anything recently on Framber having surgery, I am hoping that portends well! But regards rhyme or reason this season, pitching will be a hodge podge. I have no idea if 6-man, or who slots in where just yet. NO idea. I look for Ivey Garcia Solomon and others to be surprises & compete. Guess who pitches today? HUNTER BROWN!! I don’t expect a call up for him, but it is possible Austin Hansen does, as Correa has been really impressed by him. Bryan Abreu, Brandon Bielak? And so on..

    3. I’ve asked everywhere and nobody seems to know if insurance will cover JV’s 80% if he comes back. Is it like Drayton and Bagwell’s deal, where uncle held him out to claim it? What I do know is according to Doug Brocail, there is NO GETTING AROUND IT: almost exactly to the day, 18 months before a TJ arm is healthy. The answer is no, let him sit and if he had any honor, he’d accept our QO after the season, then go to DET in 2023. We wouldn’t even be getting the “best of him” in that scenario (exhibit 2020 for LMJ), but at least he wouldn’t leave us hanging which his $33m against the cap hangs like a noose this yr. He’s one of the greats to come through, and my least favorite of all of them. Too arrogant and not vested here for my taste.

    4. Leadoff comes up to begin only once a game guaranteed — it’s an overblown conversation piece. I don’t know or mind, it will be in flux. I did like very much, Dusty hit Straw #8 yesterday apparently as I mentioned a week ago, so as not to clog up bases w/ Maldy in front of Myles.

    5. Closer options; Baez, Paredes. A distant option McCullers, but Boras won’t go for it, unless Astros already have a l/t deal in place for Lance.

    6. Definitely put Yordan in LF at MMP in spot starts, as the season progresses. And simply pitch away from LF hitting sweet spots on the plate. He is serviceable in theory when healthy. I would think sliding is more dangerous than jogging to a lazy fly ball for example. Anything in between LF/CF and we have lightning Straw to cover.

    7. Road record ouch!, but 2020 even said the players is not predictive. Losing 1-run games we must remember the Astros went through 15 players last year and pitched 11 rookies to “find out what we have” and to battle-harden them. What fans don’t understand well is the Astros KNEW where they stood to make the playoffs. Many losses didn’t have ANY bearing on the wiggle room we had. Everyone wants to talk about losing reg season record — who cares, they made the playoffs and that was the only goal mid-way through since A’s had division sewn up.

    8. Interesting stat, another one to chalk to a “not normal” year. Guessing many other teams had the same issues.. baseball players are creatures of habit, and that was out of whack.

    9. McCullers.

    10. Tuck, Correa, Alvarez.

    11. Who would you like to trade for, and what would you offer?

    Fun exercise, Dan, thanks!

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    • I guess my answer is that at this point I would not propose a trade.

      But if I proposed a trade it would be to trade one or two of the pitchers we have that are AAAA and getting displaced by younger pitchers for a CF who would be a one year rental. Because I think Leon will be ready then.

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      • I would trade Joe Smith ($4m) because of prospects like Ivey, or Aledmys Diaz ($3m) because of the emergence of Robel Garcia. Neither would I expect to get much.

        Dropping Cishek might be a way to avoid this. Martes is warming! [Throwing hard]

        Both cases to unload salary to stay under consecutive tax threshold and draft penalties.

        I personally like the CF situation. On que Straw just ran down a laser.. Siri Souza McCormick were all brought forward because I think the Astros think the same way. Leon looks solid, but I’m doubling down that he is very unlikely to be called up this season. perhaps when he shows that 80 grade arm, I’ll be woo’d into believing.

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    • Former Astro, James Hoyt had a 1.16 ERA last year for MIA. Said his fastball was flat back in HOU, but now he’s using off speed a lot. Good for him.

      Tucker had a nice rip into CF.
      Urquidy looks very sharp. Lot of guys have lost weight. Urquidy proposed to his bride in offseason (may be a clue as to his slimming down? Haha).
      Yuli had a 6 pitch walk that he didn’t swing once. Smart to make the #1 RHP prospect work.

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  6. 1. All will hit closer to their norms except Correa, who will hit better than normal since he will be healthy all year and play more games than his norm.

    2. Framber in rotation and Javier in bullpen.

    3. Verlander in rotation and Odorizzi in bullpen.

    4. Straw leads off at least for the first month but if he fails miserably then put Altuve there.

    5. Replace Pressly with closers by committe.

    6. Supposedly we are teaching Yordan how to play First Base.

    7. Road wins are the most important but we will improve in all three areas.

    8. Giving up less runs is more important but we will improve both areas.

    9. Urquidy will have a breakout year because he will be healthy all year.

    10. Yordan, Altuve, Tucker. Correa will have an All-Star worthy season but will get less votes than he deserves because of “It”.

    11. Who will be the Astros Rookie-of-the-Year this season? I will guess Luis Garcia.

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    • Astro Nut – I really like to watch Urquidy pitch – he has good control on multiple pitches and just looks like a pitcher not a thrower.

      Rookie of the Year – Luis Garcia is a good choice, though more of one if he gets a shot at the rotation – maybe 2022? This year it is tough to say – maybe Paredes who didn’t pitch that many innings last year and is still considered a rookie.

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  7. Tip of the hat to GS1 and his info on Bilas Sports Net. Watching the Astros on Laptop today. Note 1: Dusty was talking when the fly ball was hit towards Tucker. Dusty knew it was trouble before the fly got over 1st. I don’t think Tucker ever saw the ball. 2. Watching two games at the same time today. For the Marlins fans: “Our pitchers are terrible and can’t throw strikes.” For Astros fan: “Our hitters are so patient.” 60 pitches from the Marlins in 3 innings.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. That was my #2 prospect there, folks! Hunter Brown looked awesome.

    AC, baseball on a budget, my pleasure.

    Nut, Yordan got in many 1B innings in RR. My guess is they simply don’t want him to get bored, and to keep a glove. They’d much rather give those 1B innings in long run to Toro and Jones (especially 2022 forward), unless they buy up Yuli’s 2nd yr.

    Paredes has 1.0 year of service time. I don’t have him on a prospect list any more. Astros Future does, where Enoli doesn’t qualify far as I know? (After 0.81 yrs is cut off). Anyay, that is according to FG Roster Resource.

    Man, that baseball looks significantly DEADENED.

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  9. Blair Henley showing some nerves in his first action.

    He was a nothing special starter at UT, but has developed solid spin rates and did real well in TC. He should start in Fayettville this year.

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  10. The baby Astros rally in the 9th but end up one run short – 6-5. I did get to see Mr. Leon draw a walk and Mr. Pena punch a two run single. Stubbs hit a nice drive in to the corner for an RBI double.
    I saw portions of the game – kind of fun just to see some of these kids who are just names.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Freudis Nova had a deep hit off Left Center wall, easy swing. Impressive ab that extended the 9th. Pena was pretty much due at 0-14, and couldn’t let the “kid” show him up.

      Fun game overall. Lots of new faces got to see some action.

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  11. To continue the Stella Artois conversation from above – I asked my son, Adam about Stella being the most popular beer in San Marcos, since he went to school at Texas St. in San Marcos – here is what he said….

    “I don’t recall that off hand but I also didn’t have tons of money to throw around in college at the bars haha. I would say cheap garbage beers were more popular (keystone, naty light, etc) from what I recall.

    I will note that as a college town it doesn’t surprise me overall too much because a) Stella is fairly cheap for an import, b) it is easy to drink for people that don’t like strong flavors in their beers (people new to drinking, people that usually drink vodka sodas but find themselves drinking beer) , and Stella is everywhere (kinda like Heineken corona Dos Equis).

    The main shiner beer is a bit stronger of a flavor which can be an acquired taste. Still very popular but it cuts out some drinkers.

    I knew a woman that hated 99% of beers and would only drink Stella, so I guess the point is it is a beer for people that don’t like beer.”

    I told him he should do a George Costanza and get hold of the Stella Artois advertising department and convince them to change their slogan to “A beer of people that don’t like beer”.

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    • Good stuff, Dan. Very funny as usual!
      Your son definitely has the lingo down in Naty Light. College days were long ago for me, but when I was on a budget too, I’ve “stooped” to Milwaukee’s Best we called, “Beast Light.” Could never quite acquire the taste of Lone Star, for example. As in life, I’ve gone through a few phases..

      Well, today Pete Solomon gets a CLEAN start! If he cruises today, I think it earns him a spot at AAA at least on fast track to HOU.

      Bregman gets back in there again, and I think this is another DeGrom day. He looked like mid-season Cy Young last outing. Dusty is smart to let Nova get a start, who hit a sweet-swinging ball off the wall yesterday in the 9th. I may have to eat some crow on that kid ultimately. He’s actually looking the part, which makes since why the Astros gambled by rostering him at a young age (when they had to).

      I’ll try bilasports again today but I suspect it will be the radio guys only, since it’s in our home park.

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      • GS – I see the Astros – Mets are on MLB TV today at noon – It shows them as being at Mets so maybe you can get it….

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    • Talk about a cheap beer. We used to drink Milwaukee’s Best when I lived in CA. I believe that we could get a case at the market for $3.99 but then again it might have been the alcohol that was lowering the price. In Kazakhstan we used to drink Baltica #9. The number indicated the potency of the beer. It didn’t take many to do the job. As for Texas beers there was always Lone Star and Pearl Beer (from the country of eleven hundred springs). Haven’t had either of those or a Shiner Bock in a long time. Sure sounds pretty good right now though.

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  12. When I was in college (late 70’s) I worked part time at Lewis and Coker (I-10 and Bunker Hill). There always seemed to be a beer every week that was right at that 99 cents for a 6 pack mark. Lone Star, Milwaukee’s Best, Pearl, etc.
    It was like they rotated which was the cheapest every week and folks would wipe that one out until the next week.

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    • IN the words of Springsteen (who apparently knows how to throw a few down), “those glory days just pass you by.”

      If it’s on TV, that’ll be great.
      An ice cold one would be nice, Z!

      Another note on lineup & defense. Pena SS/Nova 2B reads like a 2023 roster. I’m starting to open my mind to this anyway. Each day that lingers on without a deal for Correa is facilitating it.

      Also, is this the longest 2nd opinion you’ve ever heard of for Framber? I think it’s a great sign they’re possibly seeing how he feels after a week or two before “cutting into” his entire season. Nobody has seemd to answer how he could have continued pitching and squeezed his hand if he truly had a bad fracture.. I’m praying on this one.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. On another topic, I haven’t seen a “cut list” yet. Does anybody know where there is one and who has been sent down? Getting ready to watch Astros-Mets shortly. Bregman is batting third today, Alvarez fourth.

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    • I’ve seen enough to work it all out, yes.

      But no, very few have the guts to say definitively yet. I give credit to Chandler Rome for suggesting we might trade Diaz (now that Garcia Toro Jones are emerging all at league minimum prices). The thing people must realize is the terrible influx of players still waiting for a phone call, like Reddick.

      The difficulty of projecting the roster today is, not exactly knowing what Crane wants to do on budget at this moment. My feeble suggestion is to MAKE CUTS and stay well below the tax, so we can do “whatever we want along the way.”

      Realizing Whitley must stay on 40-man is another shot to it. Diaz Smith and Cishek all with semi-favorable contracts have *some value* and may be traded. I can see some players are thoroughly blocked for yrs but don’t have their value up yet; Toro, Nova and a number of pitchers. It’s an interesting equation as you consider first whether spending is “worth it” without knowing whether the team will win ALCS.

      Maybe I’ll post in a few days..

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  14. Jeez Louise – he throws 13 pitches in the first – 6 – 100 mph fastballs, 5 – 99 mph and 2 – 93 mph sliders – strikes out Siri and Brantley and a fly ball by Bregman.

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  15. Memo to Forrest Whitley – pitchers like Hunter Brown, Peter Solomon, etc. who may actually listen to their elders, are likely passing you on the pecking list…..

    Liked by 1 person

    • I realize I jump to defend Whitley all too often, but for some perspective: Solomon is returning from TJS and nobody ever mentions his mental makeup as deficient. Someone posted earlier today how “funny” it is that in 2018 Forrest, Brent Honeywell and Alex Reyes were all supposed to be Aces. It’s tough sledding out there altogether. There just aren’t many Mike Soroka’s growing on trees, and drafting a HS right-handed flame thrower is about the riskiest pick there is.

      Hope this comment has nothing to do with Hunter Brown’s future. I cannot think of many young, hard-throwing pitchers that have had a smooth path.

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  16. Astros on Bilasport right now.

    As to beer in the old days, in 1968 (similar to Zman and DanP) the PX would bring in a pallet of beer and that was it until it was sold out. Being a mouthy Texan at that age. I told them buy anything and I will drink it. One pallet was OB beer from Korea, I think. Made from rice. I made it through 2, maybe 3, and it was time to eat crow. In college, Carling, Milwaukee’ Best. Pearl – complete with after taste, Lone Star – with that taste of old rusted bed springs, Grand Prize – that you could scrape off the label and tell your girl friends it was “imported”. It is hard to be a poor drunk and be picky back then.

    And this Rodriguez doesn’t look good so far.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ah yes – Carling was another in the “cheap” rotation. I think Rheingold would show up there once in awhile and Falstaff and Jax.

      Up north in Milwaukee – Blatz was the cheap local beer…That beer was the only one that would give me a headache after drinking just one….

      Liked by 1 person

    • Very humorous truly, but keep in mind. We put a 1B mitt on Alex De Goti, and once Carson LaRue entered, we’d thrown in the towel. Just get our boys home to OD healthy, that is job #1.

      Wouldn’t it be nice to have all the money in the world to afford Jacob DeGrom and F Lindor? Bet the Mets STILL finish 3rd behind Atl, MIA.

      Why couldn’t Astros have taken Alonso instead of Ronnie Dawson? Oh, why?!

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      • I think Miami is this year’s Philadelphia…the team that disappoints and finishes 15 games out of first in the East.

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  17. Someone on here asked about initial roster cuts yesterday. On TV they were talking that the minor league starters are always the first cuts. They need to work on stretching out the innings and so few innings are available. I didn’t catch the name or names but obviously some of the invitees have already been assigned to the minor league camp. (That was how I heard it anyway in the middle of the dog barking.)

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  18. I still work so I can’t sit around all day watching baseball and drinking cheap beer like you guys. But I just looked at the highlight of the game for me. What a nice easy stroke by Bregman out to the fence in right center. He’s stronger and will hit for a high .OPS, even if they’ve deadened the baseball.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. The latest roster cuts:

    My favorite cheap beer: A&W Root

    Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks here too Astro Nut. Just trying to see “who’s on first” these days.
        And another memory item. You did it with Root beer. In Pasadena at the intersection of S Shaver and Allendale Rd there was a place called the Grove. They featured great Hamburgers and 5 cent frosty mugs of root beer. Another great Hamburger place was the “Chuck Wagon” which was between Shaver and Main St. Did anybody ever eat at a WT Roadrunner? They also had great burgers. Their location was across the street from S Houston High School. I must be getting old. That was 60 years ago. I can remember all of that stuff but can’t remember where I put my car keys 6 minutes ago.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Zanuda, remember the Three Gables, Tom’s Treat, The Point at York, Spencer, and Texas. It was a treat to eat their burgers. Vicki’s and their space ship. The old A&W across from the old junior high school on College. Seems you and I probably crossed paths as kids buddy as I lived in SoHo from ’57 – ’94.

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      • My very limited stories about Pasa-Get Down-Dena, or affectionately knows as, “Stinka-dena” had me driving down Shaver Rd on my route job in 1998. One of my stops was a bar with a big sign which obviously had changed the name many times. It bore the painted over telltale signs you might see of a college campus mascot. It was called, “She’s Not Here.”

        I thought, what in the world? Does it mean my wife?

        As I’m walking to the barkeep, I notice a long-haired blonde standing with their back toward me, and a shapely derriere if ya know what I mean. Trying to stay focused on the job, I mastered & fixed my eyes upon the customer. No sooner than that, the patron turned around with full-on masculine features and beard greeted me in a c’monish way. I then realized why the bar was thus named.

        Needless to say, all told, I scurried out of town lickety split, having remembered what my dad told me about go cross town, away from Alief as a youth.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sarge, I remember Vicki’s and the Spaceship vaguely. My dad used to work for Catus Petroleum which was close to 225 and Galveston Rd. He got transferred to North Carolina in 1964 so I pretty much spent my teenage years here. My Dad got transferred back to Houston in 1972 and I went back in ’75 for a couple of years. That’s where I got my foot in the door of the Petro-Chemical construction business. Worked in Chocolate Bayou and then at the Houston office which was at Braeswood and 610. Later it was on to Saudi Arabia. Not always peaches and cream but I wouldn’t trade those times for all the tea in China. Lot’s of fond memories from the Bayou city.
        As for GoStros1 story, I would venture to say that most of us have found ourselves in a similar situation. I was working in San Francisco in 1986 and we decided to go drinking after work. We teamed up with two other guys and their girlfriend and bounced around from place to place looking for a fun bar with entertainment. Finally, this guy told us about a bar called “The Stud”. (yes, we should have known). It was a really nice place and we were drinking our beers and everything seemed normal. That is until the music started playing. I felt like George Clooney in the movie “Dusk to Dawn” as all of the sudden the whole place was full of those of a different persuasion. The three others we were with freaked out and ran out of the place not even finishing their beers. My friend and I finished ours, then we calmly walked out. Nobody bothered us but it sure was a different experience. Oh what a tangled web we weave.

        Liked by 2 people

      • This reminds me of one of my guilty pleasures – watching Gilmore Girls. They have this “unique” character named Kirk. At one point they are in a small town meeting talking about how to address the problem of the deer getting into people’s gardens and Kirk says….
        Kirk: You release a pack of wolves, they eat the deer, problem solved. [brief pause] Of course, then you’ll have to deal with your wolf problem.

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  20. On neighboring Montserrat, today is a public holiday. Montserrat acknowledges it’s Irish heritage while celebrating the enslaved people who rebelled against it. On March 17 in 1768, hoping to take advantage of their drunken overseers’, a revolt was staged, but with unfortunate results.

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  21. Dusty only giving Bregman “a taste” yesterday, has other plans today. Strom gets his wish to make Abreu the starter for a day. The 2 sidewinders face off; Smith & Cishek. Superfluous? Perhaps.

    Astros with a big boy lineup, minus Bregman:

    2B Altuve
    LF Brantley
    DH Alvarez
    SS Correa
    RF Tucker
    1B Gurriel
    3B Toro
    CF Straw
    C Maldonado

    RHP Abreu.

    Scheduled Relievers: RHP Joe Smith, RHP Steve Cishek, LHP Brooks Raley, RHP Enoli Paredes, RHP Hector Velazquez

    Liked by 1 person

  22. “Between 2019 and 2020 the Astros scoring went down from 5.68 to 4.65 runs/game.”

    Regarding the drop in runs scored: In 2019, Altuve slashed .298, .353, .903, with 31 HR and only 82 strikeouts. Does anybody really think he’ll give us anything close to that this year? Meanwhile, in 2019 gave us .298, .343, .884, with 31 HR, 104 RBI, and only 65 strikeouts. He looks to be way off that pace this year. And, in case anyone didn’t notice, we lost a guy kind-of important fellow named George Springer. If we average 4.65 runs a game [the 2020 average] it will mean we faced atrocious pitching – at least in our division.

    Regarding the increase in runs allowed: In 2019 the Astros had much better pitching – both in the starting rotation (which kicked off with Verlander and Cole) and in the bullpen – than we had in 2020. Unfortunately, we aren’t going to have a 2019 quality rotation or bullpen in 2021 either. I think we should see the average runs allowed go down slightly from the ugly 2020 mark of 4.58, but I would estimate this year’s rate to wind up between 4.25 and 4.50. No Verlander, no Cole, no Will Harris, no Roberto Osuna? It will show in runs allowed.

    Like

    • OK – I’ll take the bait Mr. Bill.

      Yuli’s slash went from .298/.334/ .883 to .232/ .274/ .658
      Bregman went from .296/ .423/ 1.015 to .242/ .350/ .801
      Altuve went from .298/ .353/ .903 to .219/ .286/ .629
      Correa went from .279/ .358/ .926 to .264/ .326/ .709

      That is a big gap for each of them. Even if they only make it half way back – that is a good increase for each of them.

      Springer is gone. Alvarez is back.

      I think scoring will continue to be down around the majors by design, but I think the Astros will pop up about a 1/2 run over last year.

      I am less sure on the pitching – you may be right there – though frankly we basically did not have Verlander, Osuna, Harris last year (what 15 or 20 innings total?). But I do like the number of young arms we have and hope that the ones who got there feet wet last season will be good this year too.

      Liked by 1 person

    • I’m not overly concerned with the 2020 stats for Altuve and Bregman. I’m concerned that Bregman did not come into camp healthy, apparently. I don’t expect either to ever approach their best seasons, offensively, but they don’t need to do so for us to score a lot of runs. If Alvarez is anything close to what he showed in his rookie campaign and can stay in the lineup it will be fun to watch. I’m concerned that C, CF, and 1B will be offensive voids for us.

      Like

      • I agree on Altuve Devin. Bregman has some big years ahead of him though, and he might be hitting right in front of Alvarez. He’ll see plenty of pitches. I could see another 1.000 plus .OPS from him.

        Liked by 1 person

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