Saturday, January 4, 2014

Astros Fall and Winter League Playoff Recaps

Results for Friday, January 3


Marwin Gonzalez was scheduled to DH for Zulia yesterday, but he was a last-second scratch. Zulia won their first game of the round-robin, blanking Magallanes 2-0.


Adelaide 9, Canberra 7

The Bite saw their 5-0 lead vanish, but they broke a 7-7 tie wth a pair of runs in the top of the 9th.

Adelaide Bite
SS Joe Sclafani: 2-5, R, K, SB (9), CS (1)

Melbourne 2, Perth 1

The Heat only had 2 hits in this game, one of which was a solo homer from Brandon Tripp in the 8th. Cameron Lamb tossed a scoreless 8th inning.

Perth Heat
LHP Cameron Lamb: IP, BB


Águilas 3, Gigantes 2

In this latest installment of the Cibao derby, Águilas got back to .500 with the win. They went ahead in this game with 2 in the top of the 8th.

Águilas Cibaeñas
SS Jonathan Villar: 0-1, K; entered game as a defensive replacement in the 9th.


Here is the schedule of games for the round-robin, which will conclude on January 17.

Ponce 6, Carolina 2

All Ponce, as they stormed out to a 6-0 lead. Carolina's 2 runs were consolation runs in the 7th and 9th.

Gigantes de Carolina
2B Enrique Hernandez: 1-3, BB
1B Jobduan Morales: 0-4, K

Mayagüez 4, Caguas 3 in 11 innings

Mayagüez (4, 11, 3) had one more in each column than Caguas (3, 10, 2). An RBI triple from Dodgers SS Dee Gordon in the top of the 11th proved to be the difference.

Criollos de Caguas
C Roberto Peña: 1-2, K; entered game as a pinch-hitter in the 10th.

Happy Birthday - 1/4

Happy Birthday to ~

RHP Zach Dando (23)
Originally from Colorado, Zach was drafted by the Astros in the 32nd round in 2011 out of Central Arizona College. Dando split his time in 2013 between the GCL Astros and the Tri-City ValleyCats. In 20 combined relief appearances, he had a 2.65 ERA and a 1.471 WHIP.

Former Astros with birthdays today ~

CF Jason Bourgeois (32)
Jason was drafted by the Texas Rangers in the 2nd round in 2000 out of Forest Brook High School in Houston and came to the Astros as a waiver claim in 2010. After putting up rather pedestrian numbers in 69 games for Houston in 2010, Jason found his groove in 2011 as he got more regular playing time. In 93 games for Houston in 2011, he compiled a .294/.323./.357/.680 batting line with 31 stolen bases. He was traded to Kansas City in March 2012 along with Humberto Quintero for Kevin Chapman and D'Andre Toney. Most recently, Bourgeois signed as a free agent with the Reds in October.

RHP Don McMahon (died July 22, 1987 at 57)
McMahon was purchased by Houston from the Milwaukee Braves in May 1962 and pitched in 100 games for the 1962 and 1963 Colt 45's with a ERA of 2.81 and WHIP of 1.245. He was an All-Star for Milwaukee in 1958. He played a total of 18 seasons in the major leagues for seven teams with a 2.96 ERA and a 1.246 WHIP in 874 appearances.

RHP Larry Yellen (71)
Yellen was signed by Houston as an amateur free agent in 1963 and pitched in 14 games for the 1963 and 1964 Colt .45's with a 6.23 ERA and a 1.731 WHIP.

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Friday, January 3, 2014

Astros Fall and Winter League Playoff Recaps

Results for Thursday, January 2


The round-robin kicked off yesterday; Zulia got an off day.

Magallanes 9, Caracas 8

Caracas' comeback attempt left them one run short as they dropped their opening contest. They got a 3-run homer from Bobby Abreu in the bottom of the 9th to kick it into full gear and got one more run back, but in the end, they were unable to find the tying run. 

Leones del Caracas
1B Jesus Guzman: 0-5, 2 K


Tough going for Guasave and Culiacán so far in the LMP playoffs, as they're both down 2-0 in their series. Actually, all 3 series are 2-0, as Navojoa walloped Los Mochis 9-2 last night. 

Hermosillo 5, Guasave 2 (Hermosillo leads 2-0)

Hermosillo got on the board first in the 3rd, then scored 3 in the 6th to push their lead to 4-0. Guasave never seriously threatened; they pulled a couple of runs back in between another Hermosillo run, but they were held to 5 hits in this one. 

Algodoneros de Guasave
RF Leo Heras: 1-3, BB
DH Japhet Amador: 0-4

Culiacán was blanked 7-0 by Mexicali. Gonzalo Sanudo has yet to make an appearance for the Tomato Growers.


All 4 teams involved entered play with 2-2 records. 

Escogido 4, Gigantes 1

It was Gigantes that scored first, but Escogido had the final say in this one, as their 4 runs were unanswered. They pulled ahead in the 7th with a pair of runs that were charged to Rhiner Cruz. Those 2 runs made a winner out of Jorge De Leon.

Leones del Escogido
RHP Jorge De Leon: W (1-0), 2 IP, H, 2 K

Gigantes del Cibao
RHP Rhiner Cruz: L (0-1), 0.1 IP, H, 2 ER (both inherited runners), BB, K


No games in Puerto Rico, but the round-robin playoffs begin tonight. Carolina, Caguas, Mayagüez, and Ponce qualified, while Santurce, as the bottom team, was eliminated.

In the first games of the round-robin, Carolina will take on Ponce, while Caguas plays Mayagüez.

Happy Birthday - 1/3

Happy Birthday to ~

Manager Omar Lopez (37)
In his fifth season managing in the Astros system (and his first season with Quad Cities), Lopez guided the full season A Level Quad Cities team to an 81-57 record and the Midwest League Championship.

One former Astro with a birthday today ~

SS Luis Rivera (50)
Rivera signed as a free agent with Houston in January 1997 and played in only seven games for the Astros that year, hitting .231/.286/.385. He played the bulk of his career prior to that for Montreal and Boston. After his playing days, he went on to manage in the minor leagues for the Cleveland organization before becoming a member of the Indians major league coaching staff. In 2010, he joined the Blue Jays organization and most recently served as third base coach for that organization.

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Thursday, January 2, 2014

Astros Fall and Winter League Playoff Recaps

Results for Wednesday, January 1

The Mexican Pacific League rang in the new year by kicking off playoff action.

The top 6 teams in the league qualify for the playoffs; Guasave finished the regular season in 6th; at 30-38, they are the only team in the field with a losing record. Culiacán finished 5th with a 34-33 record. There are 3 7-game series that will be played; Guasave faces off against Hermosillo, who won both halves of the regular season. Culiacán is matched up with Mexicali in the 2/5 series, and in the 3/4 matchup, Los Mochis is taking on Navojoa.

Hermosillo 7, Guasave 3 (Hermosillo leads 1-0)

The capital (of the state of Sonora) club used a 5-run bottom of the 8th to take the opening game of this series. Japhet Amador hit a 2-run double in the 4th to put Guasave in front at that point.

Algodoneros de Guasave
RF Leo Heras: 0-4, K
1B Japhet Amador: 1-4, 2-R 2B in 4th, K

Mexicali topped Culiacán 4-2 to get on the board in their series. Gonzalo Sanudo did not appear for Culiacán in game 1.

Happy Birthday - 1/2

Happy Birthday to ~

I would like to wish a Very Happy Birthday to Mike Acosta. Mike's actual job description for the Astros is Authentication Manager. He's the guy that authenticates everything from game-used jerseys to the ball from a player's first hit and everything in between. But Mike provides much more to those of us who follow him on twitter. He has a fantastic eye for photography and he zealously protects and shares Astros history. The Astros are very lucky to have him. I can happily authenticate that Mike is truly a one-of-a-kind Astros treasure.

One former Astro celebrates today ~

LHP Greg Swindell (49)
A first round pick by Cleveland in 1986, Swindell signed with Houston as a free agent in December 1992. In  96 games (84 starts) for the Astros from 1993 to 1996, he was 30-34 with a 4.48 ERA and a 1.401 WHIP. He was an All-Star with Cleveland in 1989 and won a World Series with the Diamondbacks in 2001.

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Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Astros Fall and Winter League Recaps

No games on New Year's Eve. With that said...

Happy New Year! ¡Feliz año nuevo! Chúc mừng năm mới! (If you were wondering, that's "Happy New Year" in Vietnamese.)

Happy New Year!

The wonderful thing about the New Year is that it represents a slate wiped clean. It doesn’t matter what happened in the prior year. You feel that you have the power within you to make the New Year a better year than the last in one way or another, to make yourself better in one way or another. But we’re often very unrealistic in our resolutions and that sets us up for failure. Personally, I could resolve to floss every single day, but that would make me a liar within a week, and my dentist will attest to that.

But I think New Year’s Day and the idea of the blank slate particularly resonates with baseball fans. Because of the schedule, enough time has passed that the wounds from a rough season have started to heal and the hope represented by Spring Training beckons in the not so distant future. We have already passed the Baseball Solstice.

One of my followers on twitter asked me for my New Year’s prediction on how many more games the Astros will win in 2014 than they won in 2013. I chuckled and said, “Ask me after Spring Training. We don’t even know who will be on the team on Opening Day!” I will probably pull a prediction out of some bodily orifice at some point before the season starts, but there are so many variables going in to this season, that one can really only prognosticate at one’s own peril.

GM Jeff Luhnow has been working over the offseason to shore up a few holes, in particular the bullpen that blew a league high 29 saves in 2013. On paper, I really like what he’s done, but in reality, we all know that one injury, one career worst season can derail the most solid of plans. Luhnow’s resolution to have a better bullpen in 2014 is dependent on the whim of the baseball gods.

Things tend to happen, in baseball as in life, in their own way and in their own time. As one player fails, another succeeds. And it isn’t always the player you expect. Many prospect followers had written off Brett Oberholtzer before he put up an ERA of 2.76 and a 1.102 WHIP in 13 appearances (2.24 ERA and 1.057 in 10 starts) in his rookie season.

And then there is Josh Zeid. I first “talked” to Josh in an email interview in March 2012 and then I met him in Corpus Christi later that year. I loved talking to Josh and I loved watching him pitch. (His enthusiasm is infectious and he is seriously one of the biggest cheerleaders on every team he’s ever been on.) But his results on the mound in 2012 had me shaking my head at times. I knew he had the talent, but his inconsistency had me worried. Fast forward to 2013 and he was one of the most consistent bullpen arms in Oklahoma City and earned his way to a July call up to Houston where he not only survived, but thrived. Did anyone seriously anticipate all of that prior to the 2013 season?

My point, and yes there is one, is sometimes it’s just best to sit back and enjoy the journey. I trust that between the strength of the Astros farm system and the offseason moves made by Luhnow, we will see improvement on the field in 2014. How much? I truly believe that even Sig Mejdal and his Decision Scientists can’t really quantify the improvements because, you know, life and stuff happens. [Note to self: Try to trademark the band name “Sig and the Decision Scientists.”]

But that’s one of the reasons that I love looking at the lower levels of the farm system. Even the most talented of prospects sometimes flame out. The beauty of having depth in the system is that we get to watch an Andrew Aplin or a Brett Phillips or a Kyle Westwood or a Gonzalo Sanudo (or many, many others) and know that there are reserves on the way if the current crop of talent stumbles. There will be heroes from unexpected quarters over the next few years.

We, as Astros fans, should definitely expect a better year in 2014 than we saw in 2013, but there are no guarantees and no magic formulas. Baseball, much as life, is messy. Sometimes you win; sometimes you lose. Sometimes you catch a break; sometimes you don’t. But as long as you’re headed in the right direction, it’s OK. Let’s be realistic in our expectations and maybe, just maybe, we’ll be pleasantly surprised in 2014.

Personally, it is with great reluctance that I bid adieu to 2013. It was a year of wonderful things for me. A year in which I made many, many new friends and got to know the old friends just a little bit better. A year in which I found great happiness in the most unexpected of places. A year which taught me that you’re never too old to learn new things and to follow new dreams.

But forge ahead into the New Year, I will. And I will do so with the knowledge that new adventures await, that many of the strangers from yesterday will become the friends of tomorrow. I will leave you with one piece of advice. Follow your passion. Follow your dreams. You never know where they will lead, but I guarantee it’s one helluva fun ride getting there.

Happy New Year!!! May your 2014 be filled with happiness, health and the fulfillment of dreams.

Happy Birthday - 1/1

Happy Birthday to ~

LHP Dallas Keuchel (26)
Drafted by Houston in the seventh round in 2009 out of the University of Arkansas, this Oklahoma native made all but one of his appearances in 2013 in Houston. In 31 games (22 starts) for the Astros, Keuchel was 6-10 with a 5.15 ERA and a 1.536 WHIP. He walked 52 batters while striking out 123 in 153+ innings pitched.

One former Astro celebrates today as well ~

IF Joe Pittman (60)
A fifth round draft pick by Houston out of Southern University and A&M College (Baton Rouge) in 1975, Pittman played in 67 games for the Astros in 1981 and 1982 with a .276/.323/.338 batting line. Pittman was born in Houston and went on to scout for the Astros after his playing days were over.

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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Astros Roster Moves/Transactions

The Astros today announced the signing of free agent RHP Jesse Crain to a one-year contract. Crain is only the latest addition to the team as GM Jeff Luhnow has sought to substantially upgrade a bullpen that often struggled mightily in 2013. Crain, a 10-year major league veteran, played the last three seasons for the Chicago White Sox. In 156 appearances over those three seasons, he had a 2.10 ERA and a 1.167 WHIP. In 2013, he had an 0.74 ERA and a 1.145 WHIP in 38 appearances and was named to the All-Star team.

With this latest signing, the Astros 40-man roster now stands at 40.

Astros Fall and Winter League Recaps

Results for Monday, December 30


Neither of the two games (which were makeups of postponed games) played on Monday featured Astros players, but with those two games being played, the regular season in Venezuela is complete, and now we move on to the round-robin portion of the schedule. Caracas, Caribes, Magallanes, Zulia, and La Guaira have progressed to the round-robin, and play will resume on Thursday. Here's a listing of all the fixtures during the round-robin, which culminates in a 1-game final on January 22.


Adelaide 4, Canberra 2

Joe Sclafani put the Bite on the board first with an RBI single in the 1st and was on base for a go-ahead 3-run shot from Chris Jacobs in the 6th inning.

Adelaide Bite
SS Joe Sclafani: 1-2, RBI single in 1st, R, 2 BB

Perth 12, Melbourne 11 in 10 innings

Cameron Lamb was battered in the 7th, as he gave up hits to all 4 batters he faced and gave up 4 runs. In short, a night he'd like to forget.

Perth Heat
LHP Cameron Lamb: Came on with 1 out in the 7th. Blown save (1), no outs recorded, 4 H, 2 ER (also allowed 2 inherited runners to score)


Guasave 12, Mexicali 4

Leo Heras was apparently supposed to have another day off yesterday, but that plan was scrapped after he was called in to pinch-run after Ivan Araujo was plunked in the 1st. As for the game, the Cotton Growers jumped out to a 4-0 lead after 2 innings, and after going quietly in the 3rd and 4th, they scored in every inning afterwards.

Algodoneros de Guasave
CF Leo Heras: Entered game as a pinch-runner in the 1st. 2-4, 2B, RBI, R

Los Mochis 3, Culiacán 2

Los Mochis scored 2 in the 8th to take the lead. Culiacán got the tying run to 3rd in the top of the 9th, but they couldn't bring that run home.

Tomateros de Culiacán
RHP Gonzalo Sanudo: 3 IP, 2 H (solo HR allowed), ER, 2 BB, 2 K


Escogido 2, Gigantes 0

Jorge de Leon had a good stint in relief as he was part of a combined 2-hitter. 

Leones del Escogido
RHP Jorge de Leon: 1.2 IP, H, K


Ponce 5, Carolina 4

Ponce went ahead with 2 in the top of the 9th. Carolina had the tying run on 2nd, but they were unable to score.

Gigantes de Carolina
DH Carlos Corporan: 1-4
C Rene Garcia: 1-3, R, BB, K
1B Jobduan Morales: Entered game as a defensive replacement in the 9th.

Almost Final Astros Winter League Cumulative Stats

With last night's games in Mexico, Venezuela and Puerto Rico, all of the winter league regular seasons have now concluded except for the Australian Baseball League which will continue its regular season through January 26th. Playoffs will commence later this week: LMP (1/1), LVBP (1/2) and LBPRC (1/3) as the Dominican Winter League playoffs also continue with all four teams currently tied with identical 2-2 records.

The cumulative stats (through Monday's games) for all Astros who have participated in the fall and winter leagues follow. Free agents are noted with an asterisk. Below the charts, I have also outlined some of the noteworthy performances from the three leagues which just concluded.


While others have been intrigued by the power potential of 1B Japhet Amador, it was actually his teammate OF Leo Heras who got things done for the Guasave team. Heras may not be as glamorous (or as large), but he was tied for fourth in the league in stolen bases and ranked in the top 20 in batting average, on-base percentage and walks.


New Astros acquisition Jesus Guzman put up some very good numbers as DH for the Caracas team and ended his winter season in the top 20 in the league in home runs, tied with teammate OF J.D. Martinez who had a short, yet impressive, winter. Although SS Marwin Gonzalez cooled off considerably over his final 10 games and missed a couple of weeks due to a hamstring injury, he still managed to put up some decent numbers for Zulia.

LHP Eric Berger had an excellent winter campaign, ranking second in ERA and second in WHIP in the very competitive Venezuelan league. One of our newest Astros, RHP Collin McHugh, made four starts early in the LVBP season, putting up a 0.915 WHIP and holding batters to a .203 average.


LHP Luis Cruz did not pitch enough innings to qualify as a league leader, but both his ERA and his stingy 1.174 WHIP would have ranked highly. RHP Raul Rivera pitched very well for the Gigantes de Carolina out of the bullpen and was rewarded with two starts at the end of the season. As a starter, he had a 2.70 ERA and a 1.100 WHIP.

1B Jon Singleton was certainly all over the leaderboard, leading the league in home runs, and coming in second in slugging percentage and walks (although he was also tied for third in strikeouts). He was also third in runs (tied) and OPS, eighth in OBP and was tied for tenth in RBI. Singleton's teammate OF Austin Wates might not have had flashy numbers, but he still managed to tie for fourth in the league in stolen bases while also coming in seventh in walks and 17th in OBP.

2B Kike Hernandez cooled off at the end of the season, but still managed to land in the top 10 in the league in RBI (tied for 4th), doubles and hits and in the top 20 in the league in slugging, OPS, walks and runs. Hernandez' Carolina teammate C Rene Garcia came on strong at the end of the season, hitting .300/.333/.350 in his final 10 games as did C Jobduan Morales, hitting .280/.419/.360 in his final 10.

Happy Birthday - 12/31

No future Astros and only one former Astro with a birthday today ~

RHP Brian Moehler (42)
Originally drafted by the Tigers in the sixth round in 1993, Moehler came to Houston as a free agent and played for the Astros in 2003 and again from 2007 to 2010. In 125 games (66 starts) for Houston, he was 21-28 with a 4.97 ERA and a 1.482 WHIP. Moehler served as an area scout in the Red Sox organization in 2013.

And, according to Kevin Goldstein, we are wishing Director of Decision Sciences Sig Mejdal a Very Happy Birthday today as well!

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Monday, December 30, 2013

In Defense of Reality

My friend Andy of the Houston Sports Counterplot is a very passionate individual. He often indulges in over-the-top rhetoric in order to make a point. However, he gave a magnificent, reasoned response to the recent denigration of Craig Biggio's good name by a member of the Baseball Writers Association of America in conjunction with said writer's Hall of Fame vote.

Andy's post from Saturday, if you missed it (as I did) can be found here. It brilliantly warns against the danger of (false) perception becoming reality.
"... the Hall of Fame discussion has inched away from the sport, and the spotlight shines directly on the key holders who believe their Hall of Fame vote is bigger than the candidate and bigger than the sport."
I highly recommend reading it if you have not already done so! 

Astros Fall and Winter League Recaps

Results for Sunday, December 29


Game 1: Margarita 8, Zulia 5

For the 2nd straight day, these two teams played a doubleheader. In game 1, Zulia was done in by a 6-run 2nd inning from the Islanders.

Águilas del Zulia
3B Marwin Gonzalez: 1-3, RBI single in 7th


Adelaide 7, Canberra 3

Canberra got 3 in the 2nd to get on the board first, but it was all Bite after that as their 7 runs were unanswered. Joe Sclafani busted out of his slump in a big way with his 2nd consecutive 2-double game.

Adelaide Bite
SS Joe Sclafani: 2-4, 2 2B, 2 RBI, BB, SB (6)

Melbourne 4, Perth 3 in 10 innings

This game was actually played on Sunday. I included it in Saturday's recap by mistake.

Cameron Lamb, who is currently a free agent, has allowed one unearned run during the ABL campaign.

Perth Heat
LHP Cameron Lamb: 2.1 IP, H, BB, 2 K


Licey (Anderson Hernandez) 2, Gigantes 0

2 solo shots from former Astro Anderson Hernandez proved to be the difference for Licey as they moved into a tie with Gigantes at the top of the standings in round-robin play. Rhiner Cruz tossed a scoreless 9th for Gigantes.

Gigantes del Cibao
RHP Rhiner Cruz: IP, BB, 2 K


Carolina 4, Santurce 3

An error in the top of the 7th allowed Carolina to score the go-ahead run.

Gigantes de Carolina
2B Enrique Hernandez: 0-5, R, K
1B Jobduan Morales: 0-2, BB
C Rene Garcia: 1-1; entered game as a defensive replacement in the 7th.

Happy Birthday - 12/30

Happy Birthday to ~

LHP Wes Musick (27)
Obtained in the Matt Lindstrom trade with the Rockies in December 2010, Musick was originally drafted by that organization in the ninth round in 2009 out of the University of Houston. (He had been drafted by Houston earlier but did not sign.) Injuries kept Musick from regular playing time again in 2013. He appeared in only nine games (two starts) in Oklahoma City in 2013 before going on the DL after his May 11th appearance. In 26+ innings, he was 2-0 with a 3.71 ERA and a 1.012 WHIP.

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Sunday, December 29, 2013

Astros Fall and Winter League Recaps

Results for Saturday, December 28


Zulia 4, Margarita 0

Marwin Gonzalez made his return to the Zulia lineup after missing a little over a week due to an injury in the first game of this double dip.

Águilas del Zulia
3B Marwin Gonzalez: 0-3


Canberra 8, Adelaide 5

The Bite attempted a late comeback by scoring 5 unanswered from the 6th to the 9th, but no cigar. 

Adelaide Bite
SS Joe Sclafani: 2-3, 2 2B, RBI, R, BB

Melbourne 4, Perth 3 in 10 innings

Cameron Lamb, who is currently a free agent, has allowed one unearned run during the ABL campaign.

Perth Heat
LHP Cameron Lamb: 2.1 IP, H, BB, 2 K


Mexicali 6, Guasave 4 in 12 innings

Oscar Robles, who played in 110 games with the Dodgers during the 2005 season, broke a 4-4 tie in the 12th with a 2-run homer, his 2nd of the evening. 

Algodoneros de Guasave
RF Leo Heras: 0-0, 2 R, BB, HBP
1B Japhet Amador: 0-4

Los Mochis 6, Culiacán 3

Stretch time enabled Los Mochis to find that second wind, as they seized control of this game by scoring their 6 runs in the bottom of the 7th.

Tomateros de Culiacán
RHP Gonzalo Sanudo: IP (8th), H


Escogido 6, Águilas 1

After toiling for Toros, who finished with the worst record in the LIDOM, Raúl Valdés was chosen 1st overall by Escogido in, if I'm not mistaken, a draft in which players from the 2 eliminated teams (Estrellas and Toros) are eligible to be taken by the other 4 teams (Licey, Escogido, Águilas, and Gigantes) who have qualified for the playoffs, which is a round-robin format.

Leones del Escogido
LHP Raúl Valdés: 2.2 IP, 4 H, ER, BB, 2 K
RHP Jorge De Leon: 1.2 IP, BB

Águilas Cibaeñas
SS Jonathan Villar: 0-2, 2 K


Caguas 6, Carolina 5 in 11 innings

Caguas walked off with the victory thanks to a sac fly from Roberto Peña. 

Raul Rivera made his 2nd straight start for Carolina after coming out of the bullpen for his first 7 appearances and turned in a good performance on the mound before the wheels came off in the 6th. He was charged with 2 inherited runs. 

Criollos de Caguas
C Roberto Peña: Came on as a defensive replacement in the 9th. He struck out in the 10th, but he delivered the winning run with the sac fly.

Gigantes de Carolina
2B Enrique Hernandez: 0-5, K
DH Carlos Corporan: 1-2, K; entered game as a pinch-runner in the 9th.
C Rene Garcia: 1-3, 2-RBI 2B in 4th, R

RHP Raul Rivera: 5 IP, 5 H, 3 ER (2 inherited runners scored), 2 BB, 5 K

Happy Birthday - 12/29

No future Astros, but two former Astros celebrate birthdays today ~

OF James Mouton (45)
Drafted by the Astros in the seventh round in 1991, Mouton played for Houston from 1994 to 1997, hitting .249/.321/.338 in 411 games. He was traded to the Padres in January 1998. He is currently an area scout in the Diamondbacks organization.

IF Tomas Perez (40)
Perez signed with the Astros as a free agent in November 2007 and played in only eight games for Houston in 2008, hitting .200 in 10 at-bats.

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