Saturday, November 6, 2010

How do you feel about Rangers billboards in Houston?

Because that's what's coming.

This is the curious thing about the Astros moving to their own RSN with the Rockets. By doing so, yes, they get their own station, and that generates a lot of money, sure. But I wonder if owners are so focused on getting their own network, that they don't think through what that means. In the Astros' case, what getting their own RSN means is that the Rangers will now have every single game broadcast in Houston.

And let's face it, Houstonians like to watch a winner. If the Astros are playing the Pirates in September and are 15 games under .500 and 17 games back, and the Rangers are playing the Red Sox in a pennant race, the Astros won't be getting those ratings. Of course, the Astros will get their jack from Comcast regardless of the standings, but Drayton has made it a possibility - especially with Nolan Ryan at the helm of the Rangers - that the Rangers will be the team to watch. In Houston.

Astros won't pursue Lance

Mark Berman tells e'rybody that Ed Wade and Michael Moye - Berkman's agent - that the Astros will not be pursuing Lance this off-season.

"I heard from Mike Moye and he inquired about whether we had interest in bringing Lance back and I was candid with him and told him it didn't fit for us. As much as we love and respect Lance and what he's done for our organization, We had these internal conversations in July when we made the decision to go ahead and move him.

"Lance had said he'd be open to a trade at that point in time and realistically evaluating where we thought we were going to be going into 2011 we didn't think there was going to be a fit there with regard to picking his option up. We had that internal conversation then and moved forward and made the trade.

"Our situation hasn't changed in any great regard other than as a result of the moves we made in July we also added Brett Wallace to our mix. So we know that Carlos Lee can play first base. We know that Brett Wallace can play first base. Again, as much as we love and respect Lance and recognize what he's meant to our organization, we've moved past that at this point."

"To be honest I don't know how I feel. I really need some time to digest it."

It's a sad day, but it's not like we (or Lance) didn't know it was coming. One thing I'm not a big fan of is Wade mentioning Carlos Lee at first base, over Brett Wallace. But these are conversations we have over three months to play out.

And today, we turn two years old

Today (Saturday), we make a tentative return to Astros County to blow our own horn, and celebrate our second birthday. Yes, friends, two years ago today Astros County was born, and once the goop was washed from our cold, shaking body, we started blogging. The midwife told us that the first words out of our mouths were, "Cecil Cooper did what?"

I, your Constable, thank you for your support over the last two years.

A couple of housekeeping items of note. The Juvenile Court Clerk doesn't have the In Review series in him. So if you're interested in posting for the In Review series, send an email to astroscounty (at)

We're going to pick up as though nothing has happened since Monday. Yes, the Astros hired a hitting coach. Other things happened, too, though to be honest, I wasn't paying much attention. Over the course of this week, La Constabless and I went on three dates, I watched six Scorsese movies, read three books, and had the most productive week at work in...maybe ever. So it was a good week, and we're dipping our feet back in the blogging water to test it out.

Also, I am making a pilgrimage to Cooperstown towards the end of next week. If there's anything you want to see, or want pictures of, do let me know.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Sabbatical Alert

Over the course of the last couple of weeks - perhaps due to the boredom of the playoffs - there has been a steady decline in the passion and interest to maintain the quality of what we feel is required to put into Astros County. We're not at the point that we're ready to shut it down, but it's clear that we need some time to clear our heads and find said passion. So we're taking a sabbatical of an undetermined length. It's our collective opinion that you, dear Citizens, know when we're mailing it in, and we have been guilty of that as of late. So rather than do that, we'll take a break. We're not sure when break time will be over, but if something big happens, we'll be back. Bear with us while we remember why we started doing this in the first place.

Astros County

Bloomberg Sports' 2010 Offense in review

Bloomberg Sports posted their recap of the 2010 Astros offense, such as it was. We'll list the "awards" and let you click the link to read. Bonus points if you find where one Astro's name translates into "little apple."

Biggest Surprise & Regression Alert: Chris Johnson

Biggest Bust: Lance Berkman

2011 Keeper Alert: Brett Wallace

Will Michael Bourn win another Gold Glove?

Hey, so the Fielding Bible released the results of their voting today, broken down by position.

The only Astro to receive even a vote was Michael Bourn who, with 91 points, received the highest total of any CF. (Berkman got three points among 1B).

Interestingly enough, Peter Gammons voted Bourn 5th among CFs, behind (respectively) Angel Pagan, Franklin Gutierrez, Austin Jackson, and Chris Young.

Aside: Mark Buehrle received the highest number of votes among pitchers, based solely on that Opening Day play.

UPDATE: Citizen James is correct. As we shake the rust off after a weekend away, Humberto Quintero did come in 9th among catchers, and Wandy received a vote at pitcher. Our collective bad.

Five Things We Didn't Know Last Week: 10/24-10/31

Here's a new little installment we'll be starting today, called Five Things We Didn't Know Last Week, in which we pick five stories illuminating information of which we were previously in the dark.

*The Astros re-signed four minor leaguers: Sutil, Esposito, James, and Navarro.

*Ed Wade turned down Brad Lidge-for-Cliff Lee trade.

*Brad Mills' high school retired his jersey.

*Roger Clemens is no longer welcome in Kissimmee.

*The Astros will have their own Regional Sports Network with the Rockets, airing Astros games in 2013.

Bohls: Expect a new owner before next season

In Kirk Bohls' weekly column for the Austin American-Statesman (which I've avoided since the Longhorns have left poop right there all over the bed over the last month), he predicts the Astros will have a new owner:

Look for Drayton McLane to make an all-out push to sell the Houston Astros before next season. New York banker Miles Prentice — who owns the (Double-A) Midland RockHounds — has had talks with McLane, but it hasn't gone further as Prentice tries to secure more investors for a sale that would approach $650 million.