Wednesday, March 6, 2013

State of the Astros' Spring Training

We have arrived at the first scheduled off-day of the Astros' Spring Training. What do we know so far?

*Bo Porter won't take any crap. We know about the practice celebrations, his doghouse, about how he pretty much hates the Astros' defense, and how he's a BAWSE, in general. Will this translate into wins? I don't know if you remember this Zachary Levine tweet from Feb. 29, 2012, but I doubt Bo Porter will be making any Curly noises this Spring Training.

*The Crawfish Boxes covered this the other day, but you can tell who is catching the team's eye by the number of ABs getting spread around. Your AB leaders thus far are Chris Carter (22 ABs), J.D. Martinez (20 ABs), and Jonathan Villar (20 ABs). No one with a realistic shot to earn a 25-Man spot has more than 10 ABs (though two of George Springer's four hits have gone yard.)

*Likewise, with pitching. Harrell, Cosart, and Humber/Norris/Oberholtzer are your IP leaders. Brad Peacock and John Ely have had a rough go of it, each with a 12.27 ERA in 3.2IP. Peacock have each allowed 6H/5ER, with Ely walking three batters.

*But here's the thing about Spring Training stats: they don't matter. Everyone's working playing around with adding a pitch, or their location, or their timing. I put absolutely zero stock in Spring Training stats because there are so many variables, and we don't know exactly what Porter has told everyone to work on. At the end of Spring Training, Astros County will unveil the 4th Annual Taylor Buchholz Pitcher of the Spring/J.R. Towles Hitter of the Spring awards. That should tell you everything you need to know about Spring Training stats.

*What I am concerned about is dudes not getting injured. Remember when Jason Castro jacked up his knee (which he may or may not still be recovering from - terrible grammatical effort) trying to avoid a tag in a stupid Spring Training game against the Tigers? If we can avoid that, great.