Saturday, June 4, 2011

That happened about 15 months before I imagined it would

Imagine my surprise, sitting in a Best Western in Macon, Georgia, and seeing that the Astros released Bill Hall. A couple of emotions to report:

1. I'm impressed Ed Wade pulled the trigger as "quickly" as he did. I mean, you could have made a case for this a month ago, but I didn't think it would actually happen until next season, if it happened at all. I don't know if Ed Wade isflexing nuts to show Jim Crane that he can cut waste as well as any CEO, but I like it.

2. But it's not as though Wade had a choice. Keppinger - in a limited amount of time - and Bourgeois had both done a much better job. I'm sure Wade wanted Hall to work out so Keppinger could be expendable, but in the end, we can chalk Hall up as another veteran free-agent signing that just didn't work out.

Friday, June 3, 2011

11th pick: Sinkhole

There's a post up at SB Nation on the history of the 11th pick:

In the 55 years of the Rule 4 amateur draft, the 11th pick has produced less value than the 119th pick.

Eddie's Farm: June 2

Oklahoma City (24-30)

It's hard to come back from a 5-0 deficit in the first inning, and Round Rock couldn't do it, going on to lose 11-1 to OKC. Gustavo Chacin went 5IP, allowing just 3H/0ER, 2K:2BB, while Francis Beltran allowed 2H/1ER, 3K:0BB in 3IP of relief. Fernando Abad gave up a hit in 1IP.

J.B. Shuck was 3x4 with 4RBI, while Jason Bourgeois (3B, BB), Anderson Hernandez (RBI), Koby Clemens (HR, RBI, BB), Brian Dopirak (RBI), and Tommy Manzella (3B, RBI) had two hits each. Brandon Barnes was 1x3 with two walks and 2RBI.

Man of the Match: J.B. Shuck

Corpus (19-33)

Springfield was up 5-0 before Corpus got their lone run, and then scored four more for a 9-1 win over Corpus. Jonnathan Aristil allowed 9H/5ER, 8K:1BB in the loss, while Shane Wolf allowed 1H/1ER in 2IP. Arcenio Leon allowed 3H/3ER in 1IP, and Kyle Greenwalt threw the last inning, allowing one hit.

Jake Goebbert was 3x4 with an RBI, and J.D. Martinez was 2x4 to provide your multi-hit games. 28-year old catcher Emerson Frostad made his 2011 debut after seven seasons in the Rangers system, and went 0x3 with a walk.

Man of the Match: Jake Goebbert.

Lancaster (22-32)

Modesto had an answer for every late inning run the JetHawks put up, taking the game 6-4 from Lancaster. Bobby Doran only threw 1+_IP, allowing 2H/2ER, 1K:2BB before being lifted for Mike Ness, who threw 5IP, 7H/1ER, 3K:0BB in relief. Wander Alvino took the loss, giving up 1H/3R (2ER), 1K:4BB.

Austin Wates was 3x4 with a double and a stolen base; Erik Castro and Miguel Arrendell were both 2x4, and Kody Hinze hit his 14th homer of the year.

Man of the Match: Austin Wates

Lexington (26-28)

Lexington scored three late runs for a 3-1 win over West Virginia. Alex Sogard allowed 6H/1ER, 5K:1BB in 5IP, while Brian Streilein threw 3IP, 1H/0ER, 1K:2BB and got the win. Jorge De Leon struck out the side for his 6th save of the year.

Mike Kvasnicka was 2x4 with a two-run, go-ahead homer in the 8th. Adam Bailey also hit his 12th homer of the year and had an outfield assist, throwing out a runner at home from RF. Ben Orloff was 2x4.

Man of the Match: Mike Kvasnicka

DSL Astros (2-3)

The DSL Astros overcame a 7-1 deficit for a 9-7 win over the DSL Mets2 (which sounds like what my wireless is called). Edgar Ferreira allowed 2H/5ER, 3K:3BB, 2WP in 1.1IP. Yeudy Perdomo allowed two of Ferreira's runs, and one earned run of his own in 2.2IP. Ambiorix DeLeon threw 3IP, 0H/0ER, 2K:1BB and Manuel Sanchez walked one in 2IP. So in the final five innings, the DSL Astros' bullpen allowed 0H/0ER, 4K:2BB.

Tomas De La Cruz went 2x3 with an RBI; Jose Solano was 1x2 with 3BB, Darwin Rivera was 1x1 with a walk and 2RBI in a pinch-hit/DH role.

Man of the Match: Tomas De La Cruz

Which one of these players is a pitcher in the Astros' organization?


From the Office of the County Clerk - G57: Astros @ Padres

That, my friends, is a four-game win streak. And what's more? It's a four-game win streak on the road. Astros win 7-4.

*The four game road win streak is the longest since August of 2010 (not impressive, I know.) If they win Friday's game, it will tie that streak, set over August 22-26, 2010.

*The win moves the Astros to 3-2 over San Diego this season. They have a winning record against four teams now: Cubs (4-2), Dodgers (2-1), Padres (3-2), and Blue Jays (2-1).

*On this four-game streak, the Astros have outscored their opponents 29-15. It had taken eight of the previous games to get to 29 runs.

*Bud Norris allowed 6H/4ER, 6K:2BB in 6IP. In each of his two previous starts, he had allowed two earned runs (nine runs total).

*He threw 111 pitches - 70 for strikes. Norris, this season, has thrown 1251 pitches, and 788 of them for strikes, for a 62.98% of strikes:pitches.

*Norris also only got one groundball out on the night - his fewest of the season.

*Mark Melancon got his 5th save of the season, and his 2nd in two games. He hasn't allowed a hit in three appearances, but has walked a batter in two straight games. His 16 pitches were actually the most he had thrown since May 22 against Toronto (six games).

*The offense got 11 hits - marking the 4th straight game with double-digit hits. They had a five-game stretch from April 8-12 earlier this year (2-3).

*Carlos Lee was 2x4 with a walk - the third game in his last four that he has two hits, and the 4th game in his last six. Lee is hitting over .260 for the first time since April 5th, when an 0x4 against Cincinnati dropped him from .364 to .267, and an 0x3 dropped him from .267 to .222.

*Brett Wallace was also 2x4, with a double, and a walk. Wallace now has a nine-game hitting streak, with five hits in his last nine ABs.

*Chris Johnson hit his 6th homer of the season, bringing his .380 SLG to within 101 points of his 2010 SLG. On this four-game road trip, he's hitting .353/.389/.647, with a Johnson-esque .455 BABIP.

*The Astros were 2x14 last night w/RISP, and are now hitting - as a team - .278/.351/.386 with RISP.

*Man of the Match: Chris Johnson!

*Goat of the Game: Anyone who batted with a runner in scoring position. Carlos Lee and Johnson were the only players to get a hit w/RISP.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Betting Man: June 2

The Betting Man is back! He surfaced in Monte Carlo, in a ditch, with vomit down his front and poo down his back.

He couldn't remember what the last bet was, so we'll pick up now:

Current Total: $977.59
To Date: $37.59

Tonight! Houston @ San Diego:

I'm not so sure Houston will win, but I think it'll be a one-run game, so let's throw $10 down on Houston +1.5 at +114, resulting in a $21.40 win.

I do think the total runs will be over 3, so let's put $20 down on the over, for a $37.39 win.

What's next for Jose Altuve?

We're not going to get too ramped up about Jose Altuve - well, not anymore than we already have - but it's worth wondering about: What to do with Jose Altuve next?

First of all, don't expect Altuve's stop at Corpus to be brief before heading to Oklahoma City. It took 213 ABs of Altuve hitting .408 for the Astros to decide that maybe he was too good for the level of competition he was facing. 200 ABs at Corpus could take him to the middle of August, and that's given the possibility that he's completely lights out.

That said, it's a good opportunity for Altuve. Those currently on the roster with more than 10 games at 2B in Oklahoma City include Anderson Hernandez and Jose Vallejo.

Anderson Hernandez has done the best job, hitting .261/.315/.400, with 10 errors. Vallejo is hitting .228/.287/.278 in 33 games. Hernandez is hitting .308/.368/.519 against lefties, but .242/.293/.352 against righties. Minor League Baseball's website is kind of a prick, only letting me see Altuve's current splits - meaning, his 4ABs at Corpus last night, and not his Lancaster splits. But I'm guessing they're better than Anderson Hernandez' splits.

So there's an opening at OKC for a good second baseman, and by mid-August we could be seeing Altuve playing there.

Eddie's Farm Employees of the Month: May 2011

Here are your Employees of the Month for May 2011!

Oklahoma City

Robinson Cancel! The pudgy catcher hit .370/.430/.514 in 21 games, striking out just nine times in 72 ABs, before earning a call-up with Jordan Lyles.

Jordan Lyles! The Astros undisputed top prospect threw 32IP, allowing 28H/10ER, 22K:10BB, and holding opponents to a .239 BAA.


Jake Goebbert! Hit .299/.400/.506 in 23 May games, picking up the slack from J.D. Martinez' injury. At Whataburger Field this season, he's hitting .375/.487/.656.

The Throwing Employee of the Month was a toss-up between Keuchel and Cedeno, but we give it to Xavier Cedeno. In 33.2IP in May, Cedeno allowed 26H/11ER, 30K:14BB, with 2.53 GB:FB ratio.


Jose Altuve. Of course.

Colton Pitkin! In 10 appearances (14IP), Pitkin allowed 10H/4ER, 8K:3BB, for a .204 BAA in May.


Adam Bailey! Hit .306/.366/.532 in 28 games, with 15K:9BB and 14 XBH (8 doubles, 1 triple, 5 homers) in May.

Mike Foltynewicz! Not only did he earn his first professional win, but went 2-2 with a 3.67 ERA, with 25H/11ER, 20K:12BB in 27IP.

Random Round-up!

And now we offer up your random article round-up!

The Oklahoman's Ryan Aber, on Brandon Barnes:

He credits Mike Barnett, who was the Astros’ minor league hitting coordinator but is now Houston’s hitting coach, with his turnaround.

“He kind of worked with me more, not physically, but mentally,” Barnes said. “It’s really paid off.”

Greg Rajan's Corpus Notebook:
Second baseman Jose Altuve and shortstop Jonathan Villar joined the Hooks and were in the starting lineup. Both are expected to play regularly.

“They’re here to play,” Hooks manager Tom Lawless said. “That’s what baseball’s about. You do your job, get noticed and move up the ladder.”

Eddie's Farm: June 1

Oklahoma City (23-30)

OKC scored the final five runs of the game, but it wasn't enough as the RedHawks fell short to Round Rock 7-6. Ryan Rowland-Smith allowed 7H/5ER, 5K:5BB, 2HR in 4.2IP to drop to 2-5 on the season. Wesley Wright gave up 3H/2ER, 3K:0BB, WP, HBP in 2.1IP, while Danny Meszaros allowed 1H/0ER, 2K:1BB in the final 2IP.

Tommy Manzella was 2x5 with a double, HR, and 2RBI, and Koby Clemens was 2x4 with his 6th homer of the season. Anderson Hernandez, Brian Bogusevic, and Max Ramirez provided your other RBIs as the RedHawks were 0x7 w/RISP.

Man of the Match: Tommy Manzella

Corpus (19-32)

WALK-OFF! Corpus takes a 3-0 lead, then a 4-2 lead, then a 5-4 lead, then seals it in the bottom of the 9th for a 6-5 win over Springfield. Xavier Cedeno threw 6IP, 6H/2R (1ER), 5K:2BB in the start. Blake King allowed 1H/2ER, 1K:2BB, HR; Patrick Urckfitz walked one in 1.1IP, and Sam Gervacio gets the Brandon Lyon (BS/W), 1H/1R (0ER), 1K:0BB.

Jose Altuve made his Corpus debut, going 3x4 with a two-run homer and 3RBI total. Jimmy Paredes was 2x5 with 2SB - giving him 20SBs on the season. Jonathan Villar was 2x5 with a double and the walk-off homer, while J.D. Martinez (BB), and T.J. Steele had two hits each. Federico Hernandez was 1x3 with 2RBI.

Man of the Match: Jose Altuve

Lancaster (22-31)

The JetHawks scored in four straight innings, putting away Modesto on the road, 8-3. Jake Buchanan threw 7IP, 8H/3R (2ER), 7K:0BB, while Yordany Ramirez and Andrew Robinson threw perfect innings in relief.

Kody Hinze was 3x3 with a double, RBI, and two walks; Jonathan Meyer (2B, RBI), Miguel Arrendell (RBI), and Hector Rodriguez - making his Lancaster debut at SS - all had two hits each. Ben Heath was 1x5 with 2RBI.

Man of the Match: Jake Buchanan.

Lexington (25-28)

The Legends never led in this game, dropping 5-1 to West Virginia. Carlos Quevedo allowed 10H/4R (1ER), 2K:1BB in 5IP, while Gabe Garcia threw 4IP of relief, allowing 2H/1ER, 4K:0BB.

The Legends only had three hits on the night - two of them from Tyler Burnett, who also stole a base and drew a walk, with Jordan Scott making his debut and going 1x3.

Man of the Match: Tyler Burnett

DSL Astros (1-3)

The DSL Astros got some shaky bullpen work to drop to 1-3 with a 6-0 loss at the DSL Indians. Geronimo Franzua was all about it, throwing 6IP, 3H/0ER, 2K:2BB. But then Johan Arias allowed 1H/3ER, 0K:1BB in 0IP, with Alexander Martinez allowing 5H/3ER in 1.2IP. Juan Delis got the final out of the game.

The offense only got three hits on the night - from Juan Santana, Darwin Rivera (2B), and Mario Gonzalez.

Man of the Match: Geronimo Franzua

Monday, May 30, 2011

Since when has logic interfered with the Yankees' or Astros' reasoning?

With a captip to SBN Houston, there's a link to the NY Post's George King, who says that the Astros are willing to listen on Brett Myers. But the Yankees don't have the pieces the Astros might be looking for.

It makes perfect sense for the Astros to try and trade Myers, but unfortunately, the time when Myers would have received peak return may have been about 10 months ago. Myers is struggling, and is receiving $7m this season (as opposed to $3.1m in 2010), and is guaranteed at least $14m over the next two seasons (possibly $21m). This is all well and good for a guy who threw 154 quality starts in 2010 (LITERALLY), but not so much for the guy who leads baseball in homers allowed.

Still, depending on how Jordan Lyles does over the next six weeks, there just may be an expendable pitcher on the staff. Maybe it's Myers, maybe it's Wandy. But Wandy would be the more attractive option for pillaging teams.


We don't get a lot of questions to the old inbox, but we did get this, from Citizen Ramy:

How come you don't do more draft projections?

Well, Ramy, it's mainly because it's kind of a crapshoot. And we don't know much about it. And, because the Crawfish Boxes are pretty much slaying it over on their site. We're terrible at projections, other than making some inferences and deductive reasoning based on past performances, but that's pretty much why.

Eddie's Farm: May 29

Oklahoma City (21-29)

Nelson Figueroa took the loss as Nashville jumped out to a 3-0 early lead, and held on for a 4-2 win over OKC. Figueroa threw 5IP, 5H/3ER, 3K:1BB, HBP, HR in the loss while Danny Meszaros and Ross Wolf each threw scoreless/hitless innings. Fernando Abad was in the middle of those two, allowing 2H/1ER in 1IP.

Jose Vallejo was 3x4, Brian Esposito was 2x4 for your multi-hit games. Anderson Hernandez (2B, BB, RBI), Tommy Manzella (BB), Koby Clemens (BB, RBI), and Nelson Figueroa had your other hits. Brian Dopirak and Drew Locke each had pinch-hit walks as OKC went 1x8 w/RISP and left ten men on base.

Man of the Match: Jose Vallejo

Corpus (18-31)

Dallas Keuchel improved to 3-4 as he threw a complete game shutout against Arkansas in a 4-0 win on the road. Keuchel ended up with 9IP, 7H/0ER, 4K:2BB, throwing 112 pitches in the CG/SHO.

David Flores was 3x3 with a double, and Wladimir Sutil went 2x4 with a SB, double and 2RBI, with Brandon Wikoff and Jake Goebbert adding your other RBIs.

Man of the Match: Dallas Keuchel.

Lancaster (20-30)

Lancaster took a 2-0 lead, and then saw it turn to a 5-2 deficit, but a late rally fell just short as the JetHawks dropped it to High Desert, 5-4. Robby Donovan threw 6IP, 8H/5ER, 6K:1BB, and Chris Hicks came in for the final 2IP, allowing 2H/0ER.

Kody Hinze was 3x4, while Johnathan Villar was 2x5 with a two-run homer and 3RBI. Jose Carlos Thompson was 2x4 with a double, and Grant Hogue was 2x3 with a double Austin Wates was 1x2 with 2BB. Jose Altuve was 0x4 with a walk, but is still hitting .402.

Man of the Match: Jonathan Villar

Lexington (25-25)

Lexington had a 1-0 lead going into the bottom of the 9th at Greensboro, gave up the tying run, but got three runs in the top of the 10th for a 4-1 win. Mike Foltynewicz is putting it together, throwing 6IP, 3H/0ER, 5K:2BB. Gabe Garcia threw 2IP, 1H/0ER, and Brian Streilein got the Brandon Lyon of the day (BS/W), with Jorge De Leon getting his 5th save of the season.

Dan Adamson was 2x4 with two solo homers, and Mike Kvasnicka was 2x4 with a double. Jiovanni Mier was 1x4 with a walk and 2RBI (in the 10th).

Man of the Match: Dan Adamson!

DSL Astros

The Dominican Summer League Astros dropped to 0-2 on the young season with a 3-1 loss at the DSL Rays. Reymin Guduan threw 1IP, 0H/1ER, 1K:4BB, 2WP; Yoiner Angulo allowed two runs - both unearned - on 2K:1BB in 1.2IP. Yeudy Perdomo gave up 4H/0ER, 5K:0BB in 3.1IP, while Ambiorix De Leon and Alexander Martinez threw scoreless innings.

Your DSL Astros only got three hits on the day - by Juan Santana, Mesac Laguna, and a pinch-hit from Darwin Rivera. Michael Media was 0x2 with 2BB and your lone RBI.

Man of the Match: Yeudy Perdomo