Thank God for that off-night last night, huh? The Astros are still in first place, and are the only team in the division over .500, at 8-7. They'll start a three-game series against the A's tonight in Oakland. With the Rockets tipping off at 6pm, first pitch will feel like it's at approximately 3am.
*In the wake of the Brady Aiken debacle - and it is most assuredly classified as a "debacle." It's more than a "mess," and just short of a "fiasco" - MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred is pushing for pre-draft medicals to be made available to MLB team. Within Evan Drellich's piece, we find that both Kiley McDaniel and Keith Law have heard rumors that Aiken's Tommy John surgery was not a routine ligament swap, and that there are possible career-threatening issues with his elbow. Details will come out soon, apparently.
So it seems as though - and I'll leave it at "seems" - I owe the Astros a grudging apology. I took the Apparatus to the woodshed throughout the summer and off-season over Aiken. Of course the Astros couldn't come out and say "His elbow looked like someone took a cheese grater to the inside of his arm!" to get critics off their backs, so we were forced to sit pantsless in our parents' basement to pass judgment. We'll know more soon enough, I guess.
*Beyond the Box Score has a closer look at just how good Luis Valbuena has been.
*Grant Brisbee would like to see more hate between the Astros and Rangers. Motion seconded.
*There are some questions regarding Julio Lugo's arrest for kidnapping.
*The Fresno Grizzlies will be giving out replica Giants World Series rings on Saturday. 2017 Astros World Champion rings > 2014 Giants World Champion rings.
*Nick Tropeano threw 6IP, 5H/0ER, 5K:1BB to earn his first major-league win last night for the Angels.
*2011 29th Round pick Wallace Gonzalez retired from baseball and will be a tight end at Utah this season. The 6'5" 240lb righty hit .225/.284/.329 in 89 games from 2011-2013 between the GCL and Greeneville.