Thursday, March 31, 2016

Thursday Morning Hot Links

Dallas Keuchel needed 78 pitches to get through seven scoreless innings against the Phillies, striking out six and walking none, leaving the game with a 4-0 lead. Then the Phillies got eight runs thanks to a suicide squeeze and a grand slam off James Hoyt. Astros lose, 8-4. But Keuchel finished up his Spring Training with 17IP and no earned runs allowed. 

*Sports Illustrated asked rival scouts to break down each American League team. And the Astros section is basically a gaggle of unicorns pooping rainbows and sprinkles onto a field of leprechauns making clover angels.

*A 2014 bullpen session helped remake Dallas Keuchel. (Note: I was very nervous about Keuchel's Spring Training in 2014. But you already know that, while you can't handle my Hot Takes, you also should probably reconsider my opinions.)

*Hinch, on closer:
We have a really good bullpen that can mix and match in a lot of different ways. I understand the intrigue. I don't play fantasy baseball, so I don't have to worry about the save.

*Quinton McCracken has overseen the resurgence of the Astros.

*Despite getting sent to Triple-A camp, Michael Feliz is still in the mix for the final bullpen spot.

*Chris Devenski is working his way out of his past and up the ladder of the Astros' system.

*Richard Justice talked to the Dallas Morning News about the Astros and Rangers.

*Downtown Houston is closer to becoming Craneville, what with Jim Crane opening two new Italian restaurants near Minute Maid Park later this summer.

*ESPN's MLB survey has some Astros on the list, though not very high.

*Triple-A baseball may be coming to San Antonio

*The forgotten Oklahoma team that nearly broke college basketball.

*This Saudi Arabian dude brought his four gold vinyl-wrapped cars to London.

*How an A&M-Corpus grad student organized one of the unlikeliest human smuggling rings in Texas history.

*Before you go, watch Jose Altuve launch a home run.