Saturday, January 18, 2014

Astros Fall and Winter League Playoff Recaps

Results for Friday, January 17

LIGA VENEZUELA BEISBOL PROFESIONAL

Caracas 14, Anzoátegui 13

What a night for Caracas. They scored 5 in the bottom of the 9th to walk off with the win against Caribes, and with La Guaira's 13-5 win over Magallanes, they moved into a tie for 1st place.

Leones del Caracas
1B Jesus Guzman: 0-4, RBI groundout in 7th, BB
SS Gregorio Petit: 2-5. 2 R, K

AUSTRALIAN BASEBALL LEAGUE

Adelaide 5, Sydney 2

In a huge series-opening victory, Adelaide had a 5-run 6th that proved to be enough. 

Adelaide Bite
SS Joe Sclafani: 0-3, R, BB, K

LIGA DE BEISBOL DOMINICANO

Gigantes 6, Águilas 5

Gigantes scored 2 in the bottom of the 8th to vanquish their rivals from the round-robin, setting up a deciding 19th game with Licey tonight.

Gigantes del Cibao
RHP Rhiner Cruz: He came on in the 8th, but hit the only batter he faced.

Águilas Cibaeñas
SS Jonathan Villar: 1-4, K

Licey 6, Escogido 1

Escogido will await the winner of tonight's Licey-Gigantes contest. Licey led 4-0 after 2 innings, then added 2 more in the 4th to get the victory.

Leones del Escogido
RHP Jorge De Leon: IP, K

LIGA DE BEISBOL PROFESIONAL ROBERTO CLEMENTE (PUERTO RICO)

Mayagüez and Caguas will face off in the championship series starting Sunday. Game 1 of a best-of-7 will start at 4:15 tomorrow.

Carolina 9, Caguas 1

Carolina ended the round-robin on a high note as they held Caguas to 1 hit- a solo homer from Neftali Soto (Reds) in the 1st.

Gigantes de Carolina
CF Enrique Hernandez: Entered game as a defensive replacement in the 9th.
1B Jobduan Morales: 3-4, 2B, 3 RBI, 2 R

Criollos de Caguas
C Roberto Peña: 0-3, 2 K


Astros Minor League Roster Moves/Transactions

According to Baseball America's Minor League Transaction Report, LHP Carlos Vazquez has been outrighted to the Mexican League. Vazquez was picked up in the minor league phase of the November Rule 5 Draft. Unlike the major league phase of the draft, in which the player must be kept on the 40-man roster for the season or offered back to the team from which he was claimed, teams are free to do whatever they wish with players picked in the minor league phase of the draft. I did not, however, know that you could outright a player to another country! Live and learn.

Happy Birthday - 1/18

Happy Birthday to ~

SS/OF Osvaldo Duarte (18)
Duarte was signed in July as an international free agent out of the Dominican Republic. He will start his professional career in the Dominican Summer League in the upcoming season.

One former Astro celebrates a birthday today ~

LHP Wandy Rodriguez (35)
Rodriguez first signed with the Astros on January 12, 1999 as a 17-year old NDFA named Eny Cabreja.  It wasn't until 2002 that he revealed to the Astros that he had really been 19 at the time and had used a friend's identity. ( Here is a great article by Jose de Jesus Ortiz from 2008 that helps explain the pressures facing young Dominican players who are considered old at 19.) Rodriguez pitched for Houston for eight seasons, from 2005 until his trade to Pittsburgh in July 2012, with a 80-84 record, a 4.04 ERA and a 1.339 WHIP.

Tweet of the Day

Friday, January 17, 2014

Astros Fall and Winter League Playoff Recaps

Results for Wednesday, January 15

LIGA VENEZUELA BEISBOL PROFESIONAL

Zulia 9, Caracas 4

Zulia jumped out to a 7-0 lead after the 3rd inning as they cruised to a win.

Leones del Caracas
1B Jesus Guzman: 3-4
SS Gregorio Petit: 0-4, K

LIGA MEXICANA DEL PACIFICO

Hermosillo 7, Los Mochis 4 (series tied 2-2)

The Orange Growers had a 4-run 5th to take a 5-1 lead, and "100% Mexican" Edgar Gonzalez tossed 6 solid innings as they made this series a best-of-3.

Naranjeros de Hermosillo
RHP Edgar Gonzalez: W (1-0), 6 IP, 5 H (solo HR), ER, BB, K
LIGA DE BEISBOL DOMINICANO

Escogido 2, Águilas 0

After clinching a spot in the LIDOM championship series with a no-hitter, Escogido celebrated with a shutout. 

Leones del Escogido
RHP Jorge De Leon: W (2-0), 1.2 IP, H, K

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

Licey 6, Gigantes 4

In a game that featured a combined 9 errors, Licey regained sole possession of 2nd place in the round-robin thanks to a 5-run 5th inning.

Gigantes del Cibao
RHP Rhiner Cruz: IP (9th), H, 2 K

Tigres del Licey
OF Ruben Sosa: Entered game as a pinch-runner in the 9th.
LIGA DE BEISBOL PROFESIONAL ROBERTO CLEMENTE (PUERTO RICO)

Ponce 7, Carolina 2

Ponce broke a 2-2 tie with 5 in the top of the 9th. A pair of Astros catchers were responsible for both of Carolina's runs.

Gigantes de Carolina
2B Enrique Hernandez: 0-3, BB
C Rene Garcia: 1-2, RBI bunt single in 2nd
C Carlos Corporan: Pinch-hitting for Garcia in the 7th, he had an RBI single.
1B Jobduan Morales: Grounded out as a pinch-hitter in the 9th.


Results for Thursday, January 16

LIGA VENEZUELA BEISBOL PROFESIONAL

Caracas 12, Zulia 11

The capital club finds itself a game out of the round-robin lead with Caribes as they outlasted Zulia in a shootout that featured 23 runs and 31 hits.

Leones del Caracas
1B Jesus Guzman: 1-4, 2 R, BB, 2 K, SB (1)
SS Gregorio Petit: 1-5, RBI single in 5th, R, K

LIGA DE BEISBOL DOMINICANO

Águilas 4, Escogido 2

Águilas is still very much in the picture, as they're just a game behind Licey and Gigantes for 2nd place.

Águilas Cibaeñas
SS Jonathan Villar: 0-3, K

LIGA DE BEISBOL PROFESIONAL ROBERTO CLEMENTE (PUERTO RICO)

Mayagüez 7, Carolina 2

Mayagüez jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the 2nd, then sealed it with a run in the 5th and 2 more in the 6th to extend the lead to 7-1.

Gigantes de Carolina
1B Jobduan Morales: 0-4, 2 K
DH Carlos Corporan: 1-4, RBI single in 5th

RHP Raul Rivera: 1.2 IP, 3 H, 2 unearned runs, 2 K


Happy Birthday - 1/17

Happy Birthday to ~

RHP Matt Heidenreich (23)
Originally drafted by the White Sox in the fourth round in 2009, Heidenreich came in to the Houston organization as a part of the Chicago July 2012 trade for Brett Myers. In 25 games (seven starts) for Corpus Christi in 2013, he was 4-5 with a 8.23 ERA and a 1.811 WHIP. He also made six appearances with the Gulf Coast League Astros in a rehab assignment. Heidenreich was very effective in his six starts in the Arizona Fall League in 2013, going 2-1 with a 2.14 ERA and a 1.095 WHIP.

RHP Gerardo Ramirez (20)
Originally signed as a non-drafted free agent out of Mexico by the Twins, Ramirez came to Houston prior to the 2013 season. In 12 appearances out of the bullpen for the Greeneville Astros rookie level club, Ramirez was 1-0 with a 4.26 ERA and a 1.421 WHIP. He walked five and struck out 24 in 19 innings.

Former Astros with birthdays today ~

LHP Jeff Tabaka (50)
A second round pick by the Expos in 1986, Tabaka came to Houston in a July 1995 trade with the Padres. In 42 games for the Astros in 1995 and 1996, he had a 4.23 ERA and a 1.590 WHIP.

Manager Lum Harris (died November 11, 1996 at 81)
Lum Harris managed the Colt .45's for 13 games in 1964 after Harry Craft was fired, and then was the first manager of the Astros in 1965. He had a 70-105 record.  For an extremely entertaining interview with Harris that will take you back to an entirely different era of baseball, click here. You won't regret it.

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Thursday, January 16, 2014

Happy Birthday - 1/16

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

RHP Jim Owens (80)
Drafted by Houston from the Reds in the 1963 Rule 5 draft, Owens pitched in 148 games for the Colt .45's and the Astros from 1964 to 1967 with an ERA of 3.60 and WHIP of 1.296.

LHP Ron Villone (44)
A first round pick by Seattle in 1992, Villone first came to Houston in a June 2001 trade with Colorado. In 50 games (25 starts) for the Astros in 2001 and 2003, he was 11-13 with a 4.69 ERA and a 1.374 WHIP. All told, he pitched in 15 major league seasons for 12 different teams. In 2013, he was the pitching coast for the Midwest League Kane County Cougars, a Cubs affiliate.

Tweet of the Day

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

2014 Astros Minor League Coaching Staffs

Last week, the Astros had announced their minor league roving instructors and coordinators and today the remainder of the coaching staffs were revealed. By and large, the majority of the coaches, managers and other instructors have remained in place.

Jeff Albert went from Roving Hitting Instructor to Hitting Coordinator, a position which is not listed on today's official release. Ralph Dickenson held the Hitting Coordinator Position in 2013, but is now the Assistant Hitting Coach for the big league club, a position held by Dan Radison in 2013. Radison has been named a Special Assistant for Player Development. Doug White, the 2014 Pitching Coach for the Tri-City ValleyCats was promoted to Roving Pitching Instructor, taking over from Craig Bjornson who will return to the big league club in his prior position of Bullpen Coach.

On the team coaching staffs, all of the Managers, Pitching Coaches and Hitting Coaches are repeating from 2013 with very few exceptions. Edgar Alfonzo, Manager of the Gulf Coast League Astros in 2013 is being replaced by Marty Malloy who served as Hitting Coach for that team in 2013. Malloy is in turn being replaced by Ramon Vasquez as Hitting Coach. Also, Chris Holt, formerly a scout with the Orioles (and not the former Astros pitcher) will be Pitching Coach at Tri-City, replacing Doug White in that capacity.

Other notable moves include the addition of Jeff Murphy, formerly with the big league club, who will be the Catching Coach assigned to Oklahoma City; Tom Lawless' shift from Oklahoma City to Corpus Christi; and Mark Bailey's shift from Corpus Christi to Lancaster.

It is not surprising that the coaching core remains in place. These were the men who guided six of the eight 2013 Astros minor league teams to playoff berths. Don't mess with success!

2014 MINOR LEAGUE COACHING STAFF

Coordinators, Rovers and Medical Staff
Special Assistant, Player Development - Dan Radison
Special Assignment Coach - Morgan Ensberg
Infield Instructor - Adam Everett
Field Coordinator - Paul Runge
Pitching Coordinator - Dyar Miller
Hitting Coordinator - Jeff Albert
Roving Pitching Instructor - Doug White
Strength & Conditioning - Brendan Verner
Medical Coordinator - Jamey Snodgrass
Rehab Coordinator - Daniel Roberts

OKLAHOMA CITY (AAA)
Manager - Tony DeFrancesco
Pitching Coach - Steve Webber
Hitting Coach - Leon Roberts
Catching Coach - Jeff Murphy
Athletic Trainer - Mike Freer
Strength & Conditioning - Alex Pounds

CORPUS CHRISTI (AA)
Manager - Keith Bodie
Pitching Coach - Gary Ruby
Hitting Coach - Tim Garland
Infield Coach - Tom Lawless
Athletic Trainer - Bryan Baca
Strength & Conditioning - Trey Wiedman

LANCASTER (Advanced A)
Manager - Rodney Linares
Pitching Coach - Don Alexander
Hitting Coach - Darryl Robinson
Catching Coach - Mark Bailey
Athletic Trainer - Grant Hufford
Strength & Conditioning - Mark Spadavecchia

QUAD CITIES (A - Full Season)
Manager - Omar Lopez
Pitching Coach - Dave Borkowski
Hitting Coach - Joel Chimelis
Outfield/Baserunning Coach - Vince Coleman
Athletic Trainer - Michael Rendon
Strength & Conditioning - James McNichol

TRI-CITY (A - Short Season)
Manager - Ed Romero
Pitching Coach - Chris Holt
Hitting Coach - Russ Steinhorn
Athletic Trainer - Corey O’Brien

GREENEVILLE (Rookie)
Manager - Josh Bonifay
Pitching Coach - Josh Miller
Hitting Coach - Cesar Cedeno

GULF COAST LEAGUE (Rookie)
Manager - Marty Malloy
Pitching Coach - Hector Mercado
Hitting Coach - Ramon Vasquez
Coach - Gordy MacKenzie
Athletic Trainer - Christian Bermudez
Strength & Conditioning - Julio Diaz Berrios

DOMINICAN SUMMER LEAGUE (Rookie)
Manager - Johan Maya
Pitching Coach - Rick Aponte
Hitting Coach - Luis Mateo
Outfield Instructor - Juan Zapata
Catching Instructor - Sixto Ortega
Athletic Trainer - Ambiorix Reyes
Strength & Conditioning - Geremias Guzman

Astros Fall and Winter League Playoff Recaps

Results for Tuesday, January 14

LIGA VENEZUELA BEISBOL PROFESIONAL

Caracas 5, Magallanes 3

The capital club topped the round-robin leaders and they've now opened up a 2.5 game lead over La Guaira for 2nd place.

Leones del Caracas
1B Jesus Guzman: 0-4
SS Gregorio Petit: 1-3, R

LIGA DE BEISBOL DOMINICANO

Escogido clinched a spot in the championship series with a 6-0 win over Licey, a game in which 4 Escogido pitchers combined on a no-hitter.

Gigantes 6, Águilas 2

Gigantes moved into a tie for 2nd with Licey by knocking off their bitter rivals. 

Águilas Cibaeñas
SS Jonathan Villar: 0-3

LIGA DE BEISBOL PROFESIONAL ROBERTO CLEMENTE (PUERTO RICO)

Carolina 2, Mayagüez 0

Carolina shut down the leaders, but they just found themselves in too deep a hole in this year's round-robin.

Gigantes de Carolina
2B Enrique Hernandez: 2-4, 2B, RBI, R, K
DH Carlos Corporan: 0-4, 2 K
C Rene Garcia: 0-3, K

LIGA PROFESIONAL DE BEISBOL DE PANAMA

Industriales 11, Indios 10 

Wait, where's that 10th run for Indios (box score only adds up to 9 runs)? And where's Agapito Barrios' line (zeros across the board)? 

Indios de Urracá
RHP Juan Delis: 1.2 IP, 2 H, 4 R (1 earned), K

Industriales de Herrera
RHP Agapito Barrios: ????? 

Happy Birthday - 1/15

No future Astros, but a few former Astros celebrate birthdays today ~

RHP Armando Galarraga (32)
Galarraga signed with Houston as a free agent in May 2012 and started five games for Houston with a 6.75 ERA and a 1.917 WHIP. Galarraga is best known for the perfect game that wasn't. Pitching for Detroit on June 2, 2010, he threw a one-hitter against Cleveland due to a blown call by umpire Jim Joyce on what should have been the final out of the game.

LHP George Cappuzzello (60)
A 27th round pick by the Tigers in 1972, Cappuzzello came to Houston as a free agent in April 1982. In 17 games for the Astros that season he had an ERA of 2.79 and WHIP of 1.190.

RHP Mike Marshall (71)
Purchased from the Brewers in November 1969, Marshall pitched in only four games for the Astros in 1970 with an 8.44 ERA and a 2.250 WHIP before being traded to Montreal in June. In 1974, he led the National League in appearances for the Dodgers with 106 and won the Cy Young Award with his 2.42 ERA, 1.186 WHIP, and 21 saves. He was an All-Star in 1974 and in 1975 for Los Angeles as well.

And one more birthday of importance ~

Terri (aka @AGirlintheSouth on twitter) celebrates today. Terri is one of the founding members of the *FBBBB Club (along with yours truly) as well as a contributing author to The Crawfishboxes.

*Female Baseball Bloggers Brunch with Booze Club

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Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Astros Roster Moves/Transactions

The news is coming fast and furious this afternoon. The elusive confirmation of the Adron Chambers signing is finally at hand (along with RHP Peter Moylan and IF Cesar Izturis which had been reported earlier). And a new signing that I hadn't heard rumored, that of IF Gregorio Petit was announced as well. All four of these players were signed to minor league agreements and have been invited to Spring Training.

The other non-roster invitees who will be participating in the Major League camp in Spring Training were announced as well.

1B/DH Japhet Amador

Thank You, Reid Ryan, Thank You


With the news today that the Community Partners Billboard in left field of Minute Maid Park is going to be moved so that it will no longer obstruct the fans views of downtown, fireworks and Bobby Dynamite on the train, we went from this:

Signs, signs, everywhere there's signs.
Blocking out the scenery. Breaking my mind.

 

To this ....




and this ...




and this ...




And I am (short version) ...



And I am (long version) ...




And now we can watch Bobby Dynamite up on the train doing this again ...




Thank you, Reid Ryan for listening to the fans!!!

UPDATED: Dustin thought that I should have included this one, and I can't disagree ...

 

Astros Winter League Recap

On a quiet night in the Caribbean, Venezuela and Panama were the only leagues in action, while everyone had a day off.

Panama had the only game featuring a player from the Astros organization, as Indios defeated Caballos in walk-off fashion, 5-4. Tyson Perez got the start for Caballos and allowed 2 runs on 5 hits, walked 2, and struck out 2 in 4 innings of work.

Astros Minor League Roster Moves/Transactions

As you probably already know, the Astros announced yesterday the signing of IF Cesar Izturis to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training. The move is likely an insurance move as the middle infield depth at the highest levels of the organization is thin.

In addition, according to MiLB, RHP Christian Garcia has been released by the Astros. Garcia was drafted in the 29th round in 2012 and made all but two of his appearances in 2012 and 2013 for the Greeneville Astros.

UPDATE: Baseball America shows two additional releases which I had not reported earlier: RHP Javier Lozano and OF Javaris Reynolds. Lozano, a 20-year old from El Salvador, had a 5.00 ERA and a 1.833 WHIP in 13 appearances with the Gulf Coast League Astros in 2013. Reynolds was drafted in the 7th round in 2011 and only managed a .197/.287/.243 batting line for the GCL team in 2013.

Happy Birthday - 1/14

Happy Birthday to ~

1B Chase Davidson (24)
Drafted out of the University of Georgia in the 41st round in 2011, Davidson only played in ten games for Quad Cities in 2013, hitting .238/.289/.381. His last game was April 23rd. He has now played in only 19 total games over the last two seasons.

Three former Astros celebrate birthdays today ~

2B Derrel Thomas (63)
A first round pick by the Astros in 1969, Thomas only played in five games for Houston in 1971 in which he went hitless. He was traded to the Padres in December 1971 and went on to play a total of 15 seasons for seven different teams.

UT Dave Campbell (72)
Campbell came to Houston in an August 1973 trade with Houston and played in 44 games for the Astros from 1973 to 1974, hitting .158/.179/.237. After his playing days, Campbell became a broadcaster for the Giants, Padres, Rockies and ESPN.

LHP Danny Boone (60)
A second round pick by the Angels in 1976, Boone came to Houston in a June 1982 trade with the Padres. In 10 games for the Astros that season, he had a 3.55 ERA and a 0.868 WHIP. And, yes, he is a descendant of that Daniel Boone.

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Monday, January 13, 2014

Aussie Astros Capture Gold, Silver at Australian U-18 Championships

Congratulations to Connor MacDonald, Hayden Timberlake, and their teammates from Team Queensland!

Connor and Hayden were named to Team Queensland for the 2014 Under-18 National Youth Championships, which was held in Canberra from January 5-12. Queensland went 6-1 in the first phase, which was a round-robin; their lone loss came to South Australia. They qualified as the top seed in Pool A, which consisted of the top 4 teams in round-robin play.

In pool play, Queensland was 2-1, with their lone loss coming in the 2nd game of pool play (and Friday), which was a 6-4 decision to a Western Australia squad featuring Jake Bowey. It was a measure of revenge for Team Western Australia, as they were clobbered 11-1 by Queensland on Thursday in the final round-robin game for both squads. In the end, though, Queensland would have the last laugh, as they won it all with a 3-1 victory over WA in the championship game.

We at What the Heck, Bobby? would also like to congratulate Jake Bowey and Team WA on their 2nd-place finish. Jake had a fine tournament himself, leading Western Australia in batting average and slugging percentage.

When Connor MacDonald, Hayden Timberlake, and Jake Bowey were signed, the Astros considered them to be premier young talents from Australia, and their excellent showings on the national stage this past week definitely come as positive signs for the Astros.

Now that their time as adversaries is over, we're looking forward to seeing them begin their Astros careers together.

Here are the final statistics for Connor MacDonald and Hayden Timberlake, and Jake Bowey's stats can be viewed here.

Queensland 3, Western Australia 1

Team Queensland was crowned National U-18 Champions on the strength of 3 unanswered runs and a fine performance from their 3 pitchers.

Queensland
RF Connor MacDonald: 1-3, RBI, R, BB; he reached on an error in the 4th, but was credited with an RBI.
C Hayden Timberlake: 0-4

Western Australia
C Jake Bowey: 0-3, BB



Astros Fall and Winter League Playoff Recaps

Results for Sunday, January 12

LIGA VENEZUELA BEISBOL PROFESIONAL

Anzoátegui 5, Caracas 1

Unfortunately, Caracas' hold on 2nd place in the round-robin was short-lived as Caribes ran away with the game by scoring 4 unanswered runs.

Leones del Caracas
1B Jesus Guzman: 1-4, K

AUSTRALIAN BASEBALL LEAGUE

Adelaide 3, Melbourne 2

The Bite took 3 of 4 from their visitors in a critical series win.

In the ABL, the top 3 qualify for the playoffs, with the #1 seed (currently Perth) getting a bye to the ABL Championship. The next two teams have yet to be determined, and.... it's a cluster. Adelaide is one of 3 teams with a 19-19 record, and Melbourne, who they just dispatched, is 18-20. Next weekend, Adelaide hosts Sydney, also a 19-19 team, in what will undoubtedly be their biggest season of the campaign.

Adelaide Bite
SS Joe Sclafani: Entered game as a defensive replacement in the 8th. He did not have a plate appearance.

Perth 3, Brisbane 0

For the 2nd straight game, Cameron Lamb shut the door. The Heat are looking down from their comfortable perch as the other 4 teams still in contention bludgeon each other.

Perth Heat
RHP Cameron Lamb: Save (2), IP, H, 2 BB, K

LIGA DE BEISBOL DOMINICANO

Licey 4, Águilas 1

Licey took 2nd place in the round-robin by getting a couple of important runs in the 8th inning to stretch their lead to 4-1.

Águilas Cibaeñas
SS Jonathan Villar: 0-0, 2 BB, was also picked off 1st base.

Tigres del Licey
OF Ruben Sosa: Entered game as a pinch-runner in the 8th and scored.

Gigantes 6, Escogido 5 in 10 innings

Gigantes walked off with a very important victory, thanks to an RBI double from Josh Whitesell in the extra frame. Jorge De Leon pitched a 1-2-3 8th for Escogido.

Leones del Escogido
RHP Jorge De Leon: IP, K

LIGA DE BEISBOL PROFESIONAL ROBERTO CLEMENTE (PUERTO RICO)

Ponce 8, Caguas 5

After giving up 3 in the bottom of the 1st, Caguas clawed back to tie the game with a run in the 6th, but Ponce replied with a 5-2 run over the final third of the game. With the loss, Caguas dropped into a tie for 2nd with their opponents.

Criollos de Caguas
C Roberto Peña: 1-4

Mayagüez 5, Carolina 4

Carolina took the lead with a 3-run top of the 8th, only to see Mayagüez wrest it from them with 2 runs in the bottom half of the inning. Enrique Hernandez's RBI single in that 8th inning was the go-ahead run for Carolina at that point.

Gigantes de Carolina
2B Enrique Hernandez: 1-4, RBI single in 8th, BB
DH Carlos Corporan: 0-2; entered as a pinch-hitter in the 8th.
1B Jobduan Morales: Entered as a pinch-hitter in the 8th and grounded into a force out.

Indios de Mayagüez
OF Austin Wates: Entered game as a pinch-runner in the 8th.

Happy Birthday - 1/13

No future Astros, but the following former Astros celebrate today ~

UT Ron Brand (74)
Drafted from the Pirates in the 1964 Rule 5 draft, Brand played in 300 games for Houston from 1965 to 1968, hitting .231/.293/.270. He spent time as catcher, third baseman, second baseman, left fielder and right fielder while playing for Houston. He went on to play shortstop and centerfield for Montreal.

LHP Mike Madden (57)
Madden came to Houston, along with Kevin Bass and Frank DiPino in a September 1982 trade with Milwaukee for Don Sutton. In 71 games (26 starts) for the Astros from 1983 to 1986, he was 12-10 with a 3.94 ERA and a 1.603 WHIP.

SS Orlando Miller (45)
A native of Panama, Miller came to Houston in a March 1990 trade with the Yankees and played in 247 games for Houston from 1994 to 1996 with a batting line of .262/.307/.406. Miller left Houston in this nine-player trade to Detroit on 12/10/96 (from Baseball-Reference):
The Houston Astros traded Doug Brocail, Brian Hunter, Todd Jones, Orlando Miller and cash to the Detroit Tigers for Brad Ausmus, Jose Lima, Trever Miller, C.J. Nitkowski and Daryle Ward.

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Sunday, January 12, 2014

Astros Fall and Winter League Playoff Recaps

Results for Saturday, January 11

LIGA VENEZUELA BEISBOL PROFESIONAL

Caracas 2, Anzoátegui 1

Correction: Caracas took sole possession of 2nd place in the round-robin from their hosts as they got a run in the 9th to break a 1-1 tie.

Leones del Caracas
1B Jesus Guzman: 0-4, K

AUSTRALIAN BASEBALL LEAGUE

Adelaide 8, Melbourne 2

The Bite opened this game with 2 in the bottom of the 1st, then saw that lead vanish as Melbourne scored 1 in the 4th and 1 more in the 5th to tie. However, Adelaide ran away with this one, thanks to 6 unanswered runs.

Adelaide Bite
SS Joe Sclafani: 2-4, 2B, 3 R

Perth 2, Brisbane 1

The Heat are on a roll, winning their 6th straight contest.

Perth Heat
RHP Cameron Lamb: Save (1), IP, H, K

LIGA DE BEISBOL DOMINICANO

Escogido 1, Gigantes 0

In a pitchers' duel, Escogido maintained its grip on the round-robin lead.

Gigantes del Cibao
RHP Rhiner Cruz: 0.2 IP (final 2 outs of the 8th)

Águilas 10, Licey 1

A 4-run 6th opened up the floodgates for Águilas, who went on to score the game's first 10 runs.

Águilas Cibaeñas 
SS Jonathan Villar: 2-4, 3B, RBI, R

LIGA DE BEISBOL PROFESIONAL ROBERTO CLEMENTE (PUERTO RICO)

Caguas 2, Carolina 1

Caguas put up 2 in the top of the 7th to pull ahead, and now Carolina is up against it in the round-robin.

Gigantes de Carolina
2B Enrique Hernandez: 1-3, BB, K
1B Carlos Corporan: 1-3, BB
C Rene Garcia: Grounded out as a pinch-hitter in the 7th, then stayed in the game at catcher.
1B Jobduan Morales: Grounded out pinch-hitting for Garcia in the 9th.

LIGA PROFESIONAL DE BEISBOL DE PANAMA

Caballos 5, Indios 4

The box score says that Indios lost 5-0 to Carlos Lee's team.

Indios de Urracá
RHP Juan Delis: IP, H, BB


Happy Birthday - 1/12

Happy Birthday to ~

RHP Francis Ramirez (22)
Ramirez was signed by Houston as a non-drafted free agent out of the Dominican Republic and first played for the DSL Astros in 2009. In 2013, he spent the majority of his season in the Gulf Coast League and then ended his season in Greeneville. In a total of 11 games (nine starts), he compiled a 5.59 ERA and a 1.552 WHIP. He struck out 40 and walked 21 in 38+ innings pitched.

And two former Astros celebrate birthdays today ~

2B/OF Casey Candaele (53)
Obtained from the Montreal Expos in a trade for Mark Bailey, Casey Candaele played for Houston from 1988 to 1993, hitting .249/.311/.338 in 512 games.  His mother, Helen Callaghan, played for the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, giving Casey the distinction of being a part of the only mother/son combination ever to play professional baseball. Casey liked to keep things loose.  In case you missed this interview from 2011, Casey talks about naked batting practice, the Moneyball movie and more.  And then there was the break-dancing at the Astros Wives Gala.  You may also enjoy this Jayson Stark column from 2000 (scroll down) in which Casey reveals his dream of joining the Latvian ski-jump team.

1B/OF Mike Simms (47)
A sixth round draft pick by the Astros in 1985, Simms played in 181 games for Houston from 1990 to 1992 and in 1994 to 1996, hitting .219/.298/.388. He went on to play for the Rangers from 1997 to 1999, hitting .281/.352/.555 in 149 games.

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