So how am I still standing?
It was a rough weekend for me, because in a house, nay, city full of Astros fans I was sitting alone in my room watching the Rockies lose twice. It was the saddest thing to watch Jeff Francis pitch so spectacularly and get a loss, especially because he’s on my fantasy team and I have no room for error as I battle it out for the seventh place spot.
On the positive side, the Astros really pulled it together. Impressive pinch hits from Darin (♥) and David Newhan helped out a lot, and fantastic pitching by MY LOVE THE ONE AND ONLY JACK CASSEL (more on him later). Brad Hawpe had a bunch of very key hits, and Jeff and Ubaldo (not so much Jorge) pitched fantastic games.
On the downside, Wandy’s hurt. That can’t be good. Troy Trevor has gone like, a week without a homer, and is 1-for-14 since his last home run. Manny Corpas still sucks, and Jorge de la Rosa is Mr. Inconsistent.
JACK CASSEL TIME!!!!
Pretty much if you’ve ever read this blog you know of my love for Jack Cassel. If you don’t, here’s a little backstory of my adoration of no. 20.
I met Jack at Spring Training this last year. I had no idea who he was when he signed my hat (other than he was ADORABLE, and still is), so when I got back to the hotel I checked the Astros’ roster. Turns out he went to Loyola Marymount University, which is one of the colleges I was looking at at the time. I asked him about it the next day and he provided no resounding endorsement, and we chatted as he signed random items for other people. Long story short, he is such a sweetheart, and he and his brother both had a collective big day yesterday. Tom Brady went down and Matt Cassel, Jack’s little bro who has been Brady’s backup for four years, came in and took over the game (and the Patriots won). Wandy went down and Jack took over, and the Astros won. And there’s another Cassel brother, Justin, who is in the White Sox system right now. And, and, there’s more. You know it’s not important unless The Dugout has done a piece on it, and guess what? They have. And it’s hilarious and well-written. And if you don’t yet read The Dugout, you should.
So enough gushing about Jack Cassel. How about we gush about Troy Tulowitzki?
Nah, I won’t subject my non-existant readers to more of that than I already have–except to say that he has a LOT of weird tics, like pushing his jersey up all the time.
So all in all, it was a mediocre weekend that resulted in my heart being ripped in twain by the Boys in Purple and the Boys in Red.
Thursday I’m going to the game and I’m hoping I’ll get a chance to talk to Jack :]
Until then, keep it spiffy.
…and then there’s “retro-losing.”
Yes, last night the ‘Stros had on their retro “rainbow guts” uniforms and THE GAME WASN’T TELEVISED. I have never been so cranky. I can’t believe I missed it! I wish the ‘Stros wore their retro uniforms on Sunday like some teams (Phillies, Blue Jays?) do.
And they retro-lost.
Oh, we came close. But Doug Brocail let the game go. Oh, Dougie. You had been so solid this entire year (except for that Jeter home run). Your recent ERA of 1-ish had been supporting my fantasy team. Oh, Dougie.
How could you?
Once again Wandy goes the distance (ish) and pitches a GREAT game and we can’t get him a W.
Our record in one-run games sucks (10-14), and so does our record in extras (1-1). 1-1, you say, that’s .500! NO, my friend. That means that we can’t get games close enough to make it into extras. Vomit.
But then again, I don’t know much about the rest of this game, considering that I couldn’t watch any of it except Carlos Lee’s homer.
Where Is He Now?
I decided that I absolutely had to get Matt Albers in here, so here he is. Last year was my first year “in baseball,” (OHMIGOSH yes I’ve only been a fan for a year but believe me, I’ve made up for lost time) and my dad and I literally would sit and talk about the team. We both decided that Matt was going to play a key role in the Astros’ future and rotation. Well, Matt was another part of that heartbreaking trade for Miguel Tejada. Don’t get me wrong, I love Miggy, but I was crushed to hear that three of my favorite Astros, Luke Scott, Dennis Sarfate, and Matt had been traded to Baltimore. I wouldn’t even get to see them at Spring Training! So now Matt is excelling in orange, posting an ERA of 2.77. His strikeout-to-walk ratio isn’t very good (25/21) but apparently, it doesn’t matter. He’s kicking butt and taking names as a reliable arm in the Oriole bullpen, and I couldn’t be prouder of the 23rd round pick. Good job, Matt.
And now it’s time for Pointless Ramblings. I do it so often that I decided to name it. And bold it. WOW.
1. Do I really need to reiterate my love for Darin Erstad? His two stellar defensive plays on Friday were just that–stellar. I love this guy.
2. Oh my God. Tulo came back on Friday, just as they said he would. I watched his at-bats from the last two games, and my heart swelled. I’ve never felt such happiness watching a player play. And the Rox are still wearing those black jerseys. I say throw away the others and just wear the lucky blacks. Except the grays with the purple pinstripes are my faves.
3. I’m watching last night’s Baseball Tonight. Two things: Shawn Marcum is hot, and C.C. Sabathia hit a homer! Even more evidence that the DH is silly. I love it.
4. The glove trick worked from the third floor balcony to the ground. Now I just have to actually get it to a park. We’ll see how it works out.
5. Another pitcher gets hit in the face.
6. UBALDO! And the Rox went back-to-back… and Tulo got a hit.
That’s it, really.
…I still love Luke Scott. I wish we could have lost all three games to the O’s and won all three against the Stankees. The O’s are my favorite AL team, after all.
That game was the least pathetic game we’ve had in a while. Of course, five days after I dropped Brian Moehler because he stank it up, he tossed 6 innings of 1-run ball, but whatever. Darin Erstad’s doing better for my team anyway.
I hate it when people gripe about AL pitchers batting in interleague play. I think the DH is the stupidest rule ever because it takes a lot of strategy out of the game. You don’t need to be careful putting pinch hitters in so you don’t waste all your players, and you don’t need to make double switches to put a new pitcher in behind the next batter. YES, pitchers can and do get hurt batting in interleague play. But guess what? Every day, NL pitchers bat FINE. YES, NL pitchers bat every time they start (unless he’s Jason Jennings in that 11-run 2/3 inning last year against the Padres) and they’re more used to it.
But I think a pitcher should not be a guaranteed out. Look at Micah Owings, Carlos Zambrano, and Brandon Backe. Hell, look at Dan Haren last night. Pitchers can and do get hits. And these guys don’t get hurt doing it.
Obviously, there’s a problem. AL pitchers almost never take batting practice, so their risk of getting hurt is very high when they’re batting. NL pitchers always take BP, and because of it they rarely get hurt doing routine things like, oh, I don’t know, turning a corner rounding third. Interleague play (and the World Series) is rarely fair because the rule stays in favor of the home team, and the away team has to make adjustments to their everyday playing style. Admittedly, the Stankees did sweep the ‘Stros, and that stunk. But still. Until someone gets rid of the DH in the AL or enforces it in the NL, there’s always going to be an argument, and being a National League girl, I’m always going to hate it.
In other news…
I decided to make a glove trick like Zack Hample’s. I don’t know if it’s because I have a softball glove and not a baseball glove or what, but I really had to work to get it to keep a hold on the ball. I’m proud, though, and it works great. I need to try it off my balcony and see how it holds up. I wonder if I can use it at Minute Maid Park?
…we won one and we lost the other.
First: the Texans hitting homers for charity. May I take a moment to say, I LOVE SAGE ROSENFELS? He is an absolute beast. And he hit five home runs at the Derby yesterday. And I loved Chester Pitts’ comment–“Anyone with calves this big shouldn’t be on the [diamond]. What about these calves says ‘baseball player?’ Absolutely nothing.” I found that quite entertaining. I’m glad these guys did such a neat community service project. Sounds like fun.
Second: the Astros and Brewers hitting homers. I don’t think I’ve ever actually been to a game with so many home runs hit. Unfortunately, we were on the losing end of that Derby. And Coop got ejected! When he became our manager I thought he was peaceful and calm. Unfortunately, I drafted Bobby Cox as my anti-fantasy team manager, because I would get points every time he got ejected, and I don’t know that he’s gotten ejected at all this season (correct me if I’m wrong–I couldn’t find any articles about his ejection on mlb.com). However, Tom Gorzelanny is keeping my team semi-afloat at 7th out of 9. And my fantasy team is 13th out of 14 despite winning my last two matchups… what’s the ish with that?
That’s really all I have to say for today. I’m hitting the game this afternoon, so we’ll hope for a win in the rubber game. I’ve got to go find a compressed air can to blow the air out of my desktop so I can get back to using it. This laptop is slower than Carlos Lee running to first.
…but the draft is really the only aspect of baseball I can’t bring myself to get particularly excited about.
Although apparently, Jason Castro is quite the catching beast.
Anyhow, it was nice to see that Wandy was back on. However, with the loss yesterday combined with the Brewers’ win, we’ve dropped down to fourth in the NL Central.
It was also great to see the Rockies take two from the Dodgers. They really needed that boost! And unfortunately, I had Jeff Francis benched on my fantasy team the day that he threw seven shutout innings, and I had Micah Owings active yesterday. BLECH.
Ordinarily I would do a “Where Is He Now?” right here but my brain is not quite with it, considering I just sat on the couch and played Mariokart on the Wii for an hour and a half, and I slugged down a large Black Forest from The Coffee Bean. DO YOU KNOW HOW GOOD THE COFFEE BEAN IS?! I really wish we had them in Texas. That and Trader Joe’s.
Apparently, we’re supposed to be getting the Internet at home, so when I get home tomorrow we might actually have connectivity! I really need to buy some new music for my iPod. Stupid Comcast. I hate Comcast!
There’s two Pizza Hut pizzas freshly delivered sitting on the table and I have to babysit, so hasta la vista until I can string thoughts together into coherent sentences.
…because Jack Cassel was called up and Wandy has been activated!
Two of our better pitchers are ready, and Dave Borkowski was finally DFAd. Not that I don’t like him–he’s definitely one of the nicest people I’ve met in my life–but he stinks.
And OMG, Hunter Pence. Complete, total, utter beast. Five for five. WOWsers. There aren’t really enough words.
Shawn Chacon surprises me endlessly. I cannot believe what a bargain-bin beast he has turned out to be. I was not expecting him to be so consistent. I am constantly pleased with what I see from Chacon.
I am pleased with the lack of fighting in last night’s game. I got quite tired of seeing my team act like six-year-olds.
Where Is He Now?
Today I’m focusing on Luis González, who currently plays for the Marlins. I remember his smiling, Cuban-Brad-Ausmus-look-alike face from so many games while he was in Houston. He’s currently signed by the Marlins as a backup left fielder to Josh Willingham. I don’t really know what else to say about him because he hasn’t really done anything significant this year, I was just inspired to revisit him because here in Dodgertown, the people still remember him. Granted, his batting average this year is higher than it was in 2006 or 2007, and that’s good. We’ll keep an eye on him and see what happens.
That’s really all I have for now, other than the fact that some dork in my fantasy league dropped Blake DeWitt, so I snatched him up and am quite pleased with my team now.
‘Cos it’s two sweeps in a row!
After they dropped two to the Rockies, the Astros have come back and absolutely cleaned house. First they swept away the pitching-powerhouse Padres, and now they’ve cleared out the Reds, who happened to be above them in the standings. Well, so long!
If I had the chance to see Jack Cassel again, I would give him a high five. What a fantastic job he did today. I am endlessly impressed (and shocked beyond belief) by our pitching staff. And have I yet mentioned that he’s so nice?
The bats weren’t quite as alive today as they have been but yesterday, Tuesday, and Monday they most certainly were.
But guess who else’s bat was alive yesterday? TROY TULOWITZKI’S BAT, of course! He hit his first homer of the season! And it had to be the day I benched him on my fantasy team. Same with Brandon Inge. But at least the Rockies didn’t drop another. And what’s with Manny Corpas?
And most importantly, how can I talk about so many teams in one blog post? I have no idea.
See you in St. Louis.