*Alex Bregman, March-May 2018 (250 PAs): .262/.380/.419, 18 2B / 5 HR, 31K:36BB
Bregman, June 1-end of reg season (455 PAs): .299/.402/.594, 33 2B / 26HR, 54K:60BB
*From Eno Sarris in The Athletic, on the unregulated trend of player development:
Multiple sources tell me that the Astros have spent more money on the hardware hooked up in Minute Maid Park than other teams spend on their entire player development department in a year. Every team has Trackman...but the Astros have enough high-speed, high-definition cameras capturing video of each of those movements for biomechanics analysis to make most player development directors blush.
*The Rays have "expressed interest and had initial conversations with" Charlie Morton's camp, reports the inestimable Marc Topkin. Please don't let CFM go to Tampa and pitch in Shag Carpet Stadium.
*Ralph Bowden says the Astros are still in on J.T. Realmuto, but not as aggressive as the Mets, Phillies, Braves, Padres, and Rays.
*Jon Heyman says the Astros have considered Josh Harrison as a Marwin replacement, "if they can't sign Gonzalez." Harrison is coming off a year in which he hit .250/.293/.363 with eight home runs in 374 PAs.
*With a year left on his deal and getting increasingly platooned, Yasiel Puig might get traded. In 2018 Puig got 291 PAs vs righties, with a .297/.357/.564 slash line and 153 PAs vs lefties, against whom he posted a .209/.268/.360 line.
Please note that Josh Reddick, ALSO A RIGHT-FIELDER, got 343 PAs against RHPs and posted a .231/.318/.351 line. Against LHPs, though, he hit .269/.319/.507, in 144 PAs.
It wouldn't help the angst over getting platooned, but Puig (owed $9,214,000 in 2019) and Reddick ($13m) combined would make a pretty damn good RF option
*The Astros' Triple-A trainer, Lee Meyer, has been promoted to Houston as assistant athletic trainer. This is where we are with this offseason.
*Luis Valbuena and Jose Castillo were
Thanks for the memories, Luis Valbuena. ❤️ pic.twitter.com/1KqMyq4b1Q— MLB (@MLB) December 7, 2018
*The Valbuena game I will always remember happened on July 8, 2016. The Astros had a 7-4 lead on Oakland going into the top of the 9th at Minute Maid. Collin McHugh wasn't great, throwing 6IP, 8H/4R (3ER), 3K:2BB. Oakland starter Daniel Mengden was worse. Will Harris and Michael Feliz combined to hold Oakland to just five runs in the top of the 9th, giving Oakland a 9-7 lead. Marwin led off the inning and tried to bunt his way on, and it didn't work. One out. Altuve singled and stole second, bringing up Correa. Correa struck out on a terrible pitch, so terrible that the ball got away from catcher Stephen Vogt, and he reached base, giving Valbuena runners on the corners. He ambushed the first pitch Ryan Madson threw that AB to deep right field, giving the Astros a walk-off win.
Rest easy batflip king 🤧 pic.twitter.com/LosTJJbQVc— brandt (@NombreEsChile) December 7, 2018
It wasn't the bat flippiest of celebrations, but that was fun.
Yahoo's Tim Brown: Luis Valbuena celebrated life.
*Yesterday was the 77th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, one of the monumentally dumbest acts of military aggression in history. That attack ended the Great Depression and ushered in an era of American dominance on the world stage. This 97-year old man swam through burning fuel to survive.
*A musical selection: Here's Prince covering Creep.
*The story behind the $100m deal between Netflix and Friends.
*Good news: A Nazi was convicted of murder.
*Then there's this 22-minute film from 1943: