*Take a minute to think of the families and friends of the officers killed/injured in yesterday's shooting in Southeast Houston.
*I missed this from a few days ago, but Alex Bregman is straight up predicting a dynasty for the Astros. Bregs:
The day they gave us the ring, I put it in my closet and I haven't looked at it because I want another one. I'll put the second one away after we win the third. The Astros are going to be a dynasty.
*Jake Kaplan took a stab at predicting who fills out the Astros' rotation.
*The Red Sox lead FanDuel's odds for a 2019 World Series title at +550, but the Astros are right behind at +600. And they haven't even landed Bryce Harper yet! Odds around the AL West:
*Check out this video interview from Randy McIlvoy with A.J. Hinch.
*Andy Langer's National Podcast of Texas (from Texas Monthly) sits down with Nolan and Reid Ryan to discuss payroll, MLB in San Antonio, and how MLB has (or hasn't) changed since Nolan played.
*The Tri-City ValleyCats' (Astros' NYPL team) 27-year old new manager Ozney Guillen is ready to carve out his own path. The Albany Times-Union:
Even Ozney Guillen acknowledged he was "shocked" the Astros decided to take a chance on him. He has never coached or managed. He just finished playing after a five-year career spent as an infielder and outfielder with several independent minor league franchises..."I've never been part of the Astros organization," Guillen said. "I've never played affiliated ball and it just showed me that hard work, and when you do things right, things will go the right way...
...Guillen interviewed with Astros director of player development Pete Putila, who says he prefers a younger, less-experienced candidate who can be taught the Houston way of instructing players.
Good article, definitely worth a click.
*The Rockies and A's are ESPN's David Schoenfield's picks for 2018 playoff teams to miss the 2019 playoffs.
*Rays manager and Former Astros Great Kevin Cash on Rays starting pitcher and Former Astros Great Charlie F. Morton:
We want Charlie to come in and go about his leadership, his way. Certainly he's going to be looked upon by our young pitchers and young players for that matter - and our staff. He played for a pretty good team the last couple of years...and I'll pick his brain a lot.
*Here's a fantastic article in The Athletic from John Lott about Ken Giles and how he has changed since landing in Toronto. Giles:
I needed to work on the mental part of my game. When you're young, you think you know everything. People say that as you get older, you get wiser, and you try new things. You need to broaden your horizon a little bit and reach out to other people. I just got to the point where I got tired of doing everything myself.
*Chris Nunn, who played for Corpus, Fresno, and the Independent League's St. Paul Saints in 2018, has signed with the Ramgers after getting some exposure thanks to the inimitable Rob Friendman aka @PitchingNinja. It's a cool story. Nunn signed the day after his mom underwent her first chemo treatment for breast cancer, and will likely start the season at Triple-A in his hometown of Nashville.Altuve’s swing is so beautiful 😍 pic.twitter.com/qDReqOHIBr— Baseball King™ (@BasebaIlKing) January 29, 2019
*Complete Description of the Laminar Express. (Yes, it's vague. Yes, you should click it.)
*A Musical Selection: