Thursday, January 8, 2015

Happy Birthday - 1/8

Happy Birthday to ~

RHP Samil de los Santos (21)
Signed by the Astros as a non-drafted free agent from the Dominican Republic in 2011, de los Santos made his first 11 appearances of the 2014 season with the GCL and his last four with the Greeneville Astros, combining for a 4.58 ERA and a 1.576 WHIP. He walked 12 and struck out 28 in 19.2 innings.

LF Danry Vasquez (21)
Originally signed by the Tigers as a NDFA out of Venezuela in 2010, Vasquez came to the Astros organization in the July 2013 Jose Veras trade. Vasquez spent his 2014 season with High A Lancaster, hitting .291/.353/.407 with 30 doubles, two triples, five home runs and 47 RBI in 114 games.

Former Astros with birthdays today ~

CF Jim Busby (died July 8, 1996 at 69)
Busby came to Houston as a free agent and played in 15 games for the Colt .45's in 1962 at the end of his career, hitting .182/.308/.182 in 11 at-bats. He was an All-Star with the White Sox in 1951 but his best season was for the Washington Senators in 1953 when he hit .312/.358/.415 in 150 games.

3B Gene Freese (died June 19, 2013 at 79)
Freese came to Houston in a July 1966 trade with the White Sox and played in 21 games for the Astros at the end of his career with forgettable results. His best season was arguably his 1961 season with the Reds when he hit .277/.307/.466 with 27 doubles, two triples and 26 home runs. In all, he played in the major leagues for 12 seasons.

OF Wilbur Howard (66)
Originally drafted by the Seattle Pilots in the 19th round in 1968, Howard came to Houston in a March 1974 trade with the Brewers. In 450 games played for the Astros from 1974 to 1978 he hit .252/.285/.327. He led the National League in fielding percentage as an outfielder in 1975.

RHP Julio Solano (55)
Solano was signed by Houston as an amateur free agent out of the Dominican Republic in 1979, and pitched in 82 games for Houston from 1983 to 1987 with a 4.55 ERA and a 1.405 WHIP before being traded to Seattle in September 1987.

2B Dave Matranga (37)
A sixth round pick by the Astros in 1998, Matranga played in 6 games for Houston in 2003. In 5 at-bats, he got one hit -- a home run in his first major league at-bat. He only had one more major league plate appearance (with the Angels in 2005), and did not get a hit.

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