Saturday, September 3, 2011

Happy Birthday - 9/3

Only former Astros celebrating birthdays today:

LHP Troy Patton (26)
Drafted in the 9th round in 2004 by Houston
Only made 3 appearances for Houston in 2007 before being sent to the Orioles as part of the Miguel Tejada trade

LF Luis "Gonzo" Gonzalez (44)
Drafted in the 4th round in 1988 by Houston
Played for the Astros from 1990 to 1995 before being traded to the Chicago Cubs in June 1995
Best known for his 8 years in the Diamondbacks organization in which he compiled a .298/.391/.529/.919 line
Earned 5 All-Star nods as a Diamondback with 3 AS MVP awards
Played in unsuccessful NLDS for both the Astros (1997) and the Diamondbacks (1999) before taking it all in 2001 in the WS over the Yankees in 7

OF Dave Clark (49)
Played for Houston in 1998 at the end of his career
Spent the majority of his playing days with Cleveland and Pittsburgh
Managed the Corpus Christi Hooks in 2005 to 2007 and led them to win the Texas League Championship in 2006
Managed the Round Round Express affiliate for one year in 2008
Has been 3B coach for the Astros since 2009
Served as interim manager of the Astros for 13 games in 2009
Was a Golden Gloves boxer in high school going 26-0

UT Alan Bannister (60)
Played only 9 games for Houston in 1984 before being traded to the Rangers
Majority of career spent with Cleveland and the White Sox

Tweet of the Day

@Dr_VanOstrand Jimmy VanOstrand
Time to start packing up, last day in #corpus my life is one big jigsaw puzzle I get to try and solve in my car #littleleaguebaseball

I can't imagine what someone like JVO is going through right now. He's 27. He's been at Corpus for 3 seasons. He's been in the minor leagues for 6 seasons. He's put up good numbers this year with a .305 BA and a .855 OPS and has been even better than that in August. And he's seen players come and go through Corpus, some leap-frogging Oklahoma City and going straight to Houston. He undoubtedly is at a crossroads in his life. Does he devote another year to 9-hour bus rides, strange hotel rooms and greasy diner food at midnight, just for that one elusive chance to make it to the bigs? When do you know that it's finally time to hang up the cleats and to pursue a new dream?

Roster Moves - 9/2

All of the roster moves reported by Greg Rajan and reported yesterday are now "official." Also -

1B Koby Clemens activated from the TI list

RHP Jose Cisnero activated from the DL
LHP Jeremiah Mieners assigned to LAN from GRN

Friday, September 2, 2011

Happy Birthday - 9/2

OF Austin Wates (23)
Although I have yet to see Austin play (I really wish the California league was available on MiLB.TV!), he has become one of my very favorite players. He has been Mister Consistency all season long for the Lancaster team, and I hope to see him in Corpus to start the season in 2012. Born in Seattle, WA, and drafted out of Virginia Tech in the 3rd round in 2010, Wates has been both a steady and sturdy player.

As of 8/31, his BA for the season is .303, hitting .301 vs. lefties and .304 vs. right-handers. Out of all players, even those promoted to Houston, he is a stand-out. Here is how he ranks as of 8/31 among all Astros minor-leaguers this season:

Games - Tied for 4th
PA - 1st
AB - 2nd
R - 2nd
H - 1st
2B - 12th
3B - 2nd
RBI - 5th
SB - 5th
BB - 11th
TB - 4th

And he only has 4 errors for the season.

In addition to outstanding stats, Austin is one of the first players that I started following on twitter. He is extremely intelligent, funny and has a philosophical bent that often shows wisdom and maturity beyond his years.

I hope to see him in an Astros uniform sooner rather than later, and I wish him a very happy birthday.

Tweet(s) of the Day

I just wanted to share a sampling of Austin Wates from the last few weeks.

@austinwates Austin Wates
Note to self, discount skydiving coupons are probably a bad marketing tool #nothanku

@austinwates Austin Wates
People don't disappoint us, our expectations do #couldbeaproverb

@austinwates Austin Wates
I'm replacing the word yes with affirmative, just to see if people think I'm crazy #socialexperiment

@austinwates Austin Wates
“The past is behind, learn from it. The future is ahead, prepare for it. The present is here, live it.” #foodforthought

Roster Moves - 9/1 & 9/2

RHP Jordan Lyles from OKC to HOU
RHP Lucas Harrell from OKC to HOU
3B Chris Johnson from OKC to HOU
1B Brett Wallace from OKC to HOU
OF J.B. Shuck from OKC to HOU
C J.R. Towles from OKC to HOU
RHP Enerio Del Rosario activated from the 15-day DL
RHP Jeff Fulchino claimed off waivers by the San Diego Padres

As reported 2 days ago, RHP Paul Clemens from CC to OKC was made official
The following moves reported by Greg Rajan of the CC Caller Times:
RHP Jonnathan Aristil from CC to OKC
RHP Arcenio Leon from CC to OKC
C Emerson Frostad from CC to OKC
IF Brandon Wikoff from CC to OKC

In addition, the recently released LHP Douglas Arguello appears to have been picked up by the Texas Rangers.

These moves also reported by Greg Rajan of the CC Caller Times
RHP Kyle Greenwalt from LAN to CC
LHP Pat Urckfitz from LAN to CC
C Chris Wallace activated from the DL

OF Justin Gominsky placed on the 7-Day DL
RHP Luis Ordosgoitti assigned to TCV from GRN

Thursday, September 1, 2011

RBI Leaders and AB/RBI

Who are the current Astros minor league RBI leaders and how many AB's does it take for them to get an RBI? (Note - current major league average is 1 RBI per every 8.6 AB's.)

Full season teams through 8/31:

96 RBI - Kody Hinze (CC) - 1 RBI per every 4.8 AB
90 RBI - Adam Bailey (CC) - 1 RBI per every 5.7 AB
78 RBI - Chris Wallace (CC) - 1 RBI per every 4.5 AB
70 RBI - Jonathan Meyer (LAN) - 1 RBI per every 6.7 AB
70 RBI - Austin Wates (LAN) - 1 RBI per every 7.2 AB

(J.D. Martinez had 72 RBI's in his time in the minors this season at a rate of 1 RBI per every 3.6 AB.)

Short season & rookie leagues through 8/31:

44 RBI - Chase Davidson (TCV) - 1 RBI per every 3.8 AB
38 RBI - Jordan Scott (TCV) - 1 RBI per every 7.8 AB
37 RBI - Matt Duffy (TCV) - 1 RBI per every 6.4 AB
37 RBI - Zachary Johnson (TCV) - 1 RBI per every 6.9 AB
35 RBI - Teoscar Hernandez (DSL) - 1 RBI per every 6.5 AB
35 RBI - Mesac Laguna (DSL) - 1 RBI per every 5.6 AB

Happy Birthday - 9/1

Former Astros with Birthdays Today:

RHP Dean Stone (81)
Dean played for the Colt 45's for part of the 1962 season. His first two games were complete game shutouts. When he was traded to the White Sox in June of that year, he had a 3-2 record with a 4.47 ERA.

LHP Pat House (71)
Pat had a short career, pitching for parts of two seasons with the Astros in 1967 and 1968. He was 2-1 with 1 save in 24 appearanced over 20.1 IP, with a 7.08 ERA.

Tweet of the Day

@GregRajan Greg Rajan
In his past five @cchooks starts, Ross Seaton has a 2.47 ERA (8 ER in 29.1 IP) ... and a 0-0 record. That is the epitome of hard luck.

You do want to see Ross Seaton rewarded for good starts, but the takeaway is that he seems to be coming into his own as a pitcher. Going from a 5.89 ERA during the first 4 months of the season to a 3.00 ERA in August is extremely enouraging in his development.

Roster Moves - 8/31

No new roster moves, but as reported yesterday, the move from LAN to CC for RHP Jake Buchanan has been made official.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

They Say Chicks Dig the Long Ball ...

but I hate to discriminate. I love all extra base hits! So who are our leaders in HR, 3B, 2B & total XBH? I'm so glad you asked.

Full season teams, stats through 8/30:

55XBH (26/0/29) - Kody Hinze (CC) - HR leader with 29
47XBH (23/2/22) - Adam Bailey (CC)
43XBH (20/3/20) - Chris Wallace (CC)
43XBH (24/5/14) - Brandon Barnes (CC)
41XBH (21/6/14) - Jonathan Villar (CC)
41XBH (25/4/12) - Jacob Goebbert (OKC)
39XBH (31/4/4) - Mike Kvasnicka (LEX) - 2B leader with 31
37XBH (26/2/9) - Drew Locke (OKC)
37XBH (19/2/16) - Koby Clemens (OKC)
36XBH (23/0/13) - Jonathan Meyer (LAN)
36XBH (19/0/17) - David Flores (CC)
35XBH (21/8/6) - Austin Wates (LAN) - 3B leader with 8

Just for reference, here are the minor-league only numbers for the recently promoted Hooks players:

42XBH (22/10/10) - Jose Altuve (he's still leading all of our minor leaguers in 3B)
39XBH (25/1/13) - J.D. Martinez
36XBH (22/4/10) - Jimmy Paredes

Short season and rookie leagues, stats through 8/30:

27XBH (13/7/7) - Teoscar Hernandez (DSL) - 3B leader with 7
26XBH (13/2/11) - Chase Davidson (TCV) - HR leader with 11
23XBH (20/1/2) - Matt Duffy (TCV) - 2B leader with 20
19XBH (15/3/1) - Jordan Scott (TCV,LEX)
19XBH (14/0/5) - Darwin Rivera (GRN)
18XBH (12/1/5) - Jesse Wierzbicki (GRN)
18XBH (11/1/5) - Zachary Johnson (TCV)

Season Soon Ending? Not So Fast!

Zachary Levine lets us know who will be playing ball this fall or winter.

So When is a Rain-Out not a Rain-Out?

@jasonpgonzalez Jason Gonzalez (Retweeted by Zachary Levine)
@JetHawks game postponed to tomorrow. City of Lancaster crew overdoes pregame water & attempt to fix fails.

Happy Birthday - 8/31

C Marlon Avea (18)
From Nicaragua, Marlon was signed by the Astros as a NDFA in 2010 and played his first season this year in the DSL. Over 37 games, he had a .165 BA and a .280 OBP which increased to .226BA/.359OBP with runners in scoring position. At only 18, he has plenty of time to develop his skills.

Former Astro with a Birthday Today:

RHP Tom Dukes (69) - Played for Houston from 1967 to 1968

Tweet of the Day

@ARob2627 Andrew Robinson
Why can't I just say "hey watch out for that girl on the bike before you run her over." All I can think of is to scream "AHH!!".

Roster Moves - 8/30

RHP Lucas Harrell from OKC to HOU to start on Friday (Brett Myers will be on paternity leave)

RHP Paul Clemens from CC to OKC to take Harrell's spot (h/t to Greg Rajan of the CC Caller Times)

RHP Jake Buchanan from LAN to CC to take Clemen's spot (h/t to Greg Rajan); Jake Buchanan is tweeting from LAX even as I write this so I can consider this confirmed

OF Jordan Scott assigned to TCV from GRN

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Fall Instructional League

According to a tweet from Brandon Meredith last night, the following Valley Cats will be attending the fall instructional league:

OF George Springer
RHP Jamaine Cotton
RHP Nick Tropeano
RHP Dayan Diaz
C Miles Hamblin
LHP Tommy Shirley
OF Brandon Meredith

September Birthdays

Ages listed are the player's age as of their birthday

Tweet of the Day

@JioMier Jiovanni Mier
0-4 or 4-4, nothing greater than your grandparents saying your there favorite player. #littlethingsinlifethatmeanalot

Roster Moves - 8/29

1B Koby Clemens placed on the TI list
LF Collin DeLome activate from the TI list

Monday, August 29, 2011

2010 Draft Where Are They Now? Pitchers Edition

Stats are for full season through 8/27:

2010 Draft Where Are They Now? Hitters Edition

Stats are for full season through 8/27:

Happy Birthday - 8/29

RHP Mark Jones (21)
Drafted in the 22nd round in 2009 out of high school, this is Mark's first season in the Appy League. The Pennsylvania native has struggled somewhat this season, compiling a 6.75 ERA and a 1.88 WHIP in 16 games over 24 IP. However, he is finishing strong with a 3.18 ERA over his last 6 outings.

OF Frederick Serrano (17)
From the Dominican Republic, Serrano was signed as a NDFA in 2011 and played this season in the DSL. He hit .169 over 59 AB; however, his hitting improved to .250 BA and a .429 OBP with RISP. With such a young player, there will be plenty of time and opportunity to improve.

Former Astros with Birthdays today:

OF Dave Nicholson (72) - played for Houston in 1966
LHP Dan Schneider (69) - played for Houston in 1967 & 1969
RHP Roy Oswalt (34) - played for Houston from 2001 to 2010

Tweet of the Day

@Funky2414 Jordan Comadena
@thefamouswaltt (Robby Donovan) is officially cheering for japan to beat California in the #LLWS. So un-American!

Roster Moves - 8/28

As reported yesterday, RHP Chris Hicks was placed on the 7-Day DL
2B Jose Carlos Thompson was activated from the DL

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Happy Birthday - 8/28

We have no directly Astros-related birthdays today that I could find, so I will leave you with a tangentially Astros-related birthday.

Louis Victor "Sweet Lou" Piniella (68)
Born in Tampa, FL, Lou roamed the outfield for the Kansas City Royals from 1969 to 1973 and for the New York Yankees from 1974 to 1984, collecting a AL Rookie of the Year title, 5 AL East titles, 4 AL penants and 2 World Series championships along the way.

But most Astros fans probably remember Lou more for his years as a manager, particularly his stint with the Cubs from 2007 to 2010 and particularly for his colorful ejections from games. What he wasn't able to accomplish in sheer numbers (Bobby Cox has him beat there), he was certainly able to make up for with style points. (I personally wouldn't mind a little more fire from the Astros dugout.)

After managing 3548 games for 5 teams over a span of 23 years for a .517 win percentage, Piniella retired in 2010 to take care of his ailing mother. Sweet Lou, indeed.

Tweet of the Day

@Dr_VanOstrand Jimmy VanOstrand
Dear Irene, please calm down & take it easy on ppl on the east coast. I know their accents are a lil different but they shouldn't b punished

Roster Moves - 8/27

RHP Chris Hicks placed on the 7-day DL (8-28)

RHP Jake Buchanan activated from the DL

LHP Tommy Shirley placed on the 7-day DL
RHP Ruben Alaniz activated from the DL
OF Bryce Lane activated from the DL