Good morning, citizens of Astros County. My wife had somewhat of a medical emergency over the weekend, so blogging is going to be spotty for the next few days. Of course, it may be that thinking about the Astros is one of the few ways to keep my already-tenuous grip on sanity (how awful is that thought?). Please bear with...
*Having seen their Playoff Odds (via FanGraphs) drop from 80.5% to 56.2% in the last ten days and the team fall out of 1st place for the first time since April, the Astros "are expected" to target Johnny Cueto in a trade. Jon Heyman, quoting someone with INSIDE INFORMATION THAT NO ONE ELSE WOULD HAVE EVER THOUGHT OF, says the Astros "know they need another starter." OH YOU DON'T SAY.
*Within that Heyman piece, the Astros don't appear to be interested in Cole Hamels, presumably because he's a doucheface.
*Dallas Keuchel is the first Astros pitcher since Clemens in 2004 to start the All-Star Game, joining a club of J.R. Richard and Mike Scott. And he is excited.
*Throwback link to when Lloyd McClendon said that Dallas Keuchel was an average pitcher.
*Chronicle columnist Brian T. Smith writes that Houston could very well be a baseball town again.
*Phillies reliever and noted whiner Jonathan Papelbon desperately wants out of Philadelphia.