Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


Contributors

Jim Furtado
Founder & Publisher
Repoz
Editor - Baseball Primer

Syndicate

Astros Newsbeat

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Brewers vs. Astros - Verlander Strikes Out 15 - ESPN

Verlander Ks 15.

On a night when the Milwaukee Brewers struck out again and again, piling up a season-high 24 K’s against the Houston Astros, one big swing by Mike Moustakas made all those whiffs way easier to swallow.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 13, 2019 at 06:21 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, justin verlander

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Yordan Alvarez homers in first two MLB games | MLB.com

Another player development win in Houston!

Jim Furtado Posted: June 12, 2019 at 06:01 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, yordan alvarez

Sunday, June 09, 2019

Source: Astros calling up No. 3 prospect Alvarez

Plus.

Hinch said Friday that Altuve, Springer and Diaz could be sent on Minor League rehab assignments by the end of the homestand. Altuve has been out since May 10 with a strained left hamstring/right leg fatigue. Springer has been out since May 24, and Diaz has been out since May 26, both with strained left hamstrings.

Correa sustained a broken rib getting a massage at his home on May 28 and was expected to miss four to six weeks.

The injuries have forced the Astros to call up outfielders Myles Straw and Derek Fisher and infielder Jack Mayfield from Triple-A Round Rock and each has seen significant playing time. The club also called up catching prospect Garrett Stubbs late last month when Max Stassi went on the IL with knee soreness.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 09, 2019 at 08:18 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, yordan alvarez

Friday, June 07, 2019

How the Houston Astros Disrupted Player Development to Become the Model MLB Franchise

No more than fifteen minutes after he finished unpacking in the clubhouse, Pressly was summoned into a meeting. In attendance were Astros pitching coach Brent Strom, bullpen coach Doug White, and multiple analysts from the front office. The Astros, Pressly learned, had a plan for him to be better, and the analysts launched into the details. “They sat me down and they put up all these x, y charts and all this other stuff,” Pressly says. “It almost sounded like they were speaking in a different language. I just raised my hand and said, ‘Guys, just tell me what to throw and not to throw.’” They told him his two-seam fastball to lefties was ineffective but that they loved his curve and hoped he’d throw it more. They also suggested he elevate his four-seam fastball and throw his slider slightly more to make his fastball more effective.

The newest Astro was open to input. With the Twins, he had wondered, “Why is it not clicking for me?” Now someone was offering answers. And it wasn’t just anyone; it was the Astros, who had won the World Series the year before and had a history of acquiring and improving much more accomplished pitchers, including former Tigers ace Justin Verlander, the best AL pitcher of his era. “I was just curious to see if this works. … It’s like, maybe I should pay attention over here,” Pressly says.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 07, 2019 at 10:55 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros

Tuesday, June 04, 2019

Can Brady Aiken save career from being worst MLB draft bust of all time?

A reminder that for most of the guys drafted yesterday, that first check is the only real money that they’ll make out of baseball.

Ziggy is done with Dominican discotheques Posted: June 04, 2019 at 04:44 PM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, draft, indians, tinstaapp

The MVP Machine: A Thought-Provoking Exploration of Player Development’s New Era | The Hardball Times

A crucial part of The MVP Machine’s thesis is that the technological and developmental breakthroughs we’re seeing in baseball today were never inevitable. Most of the players who pioneered new swing paths or throwing programs did so not because of their employers but in spite of them. The Diamondbacks were famously dismissive of Bauer and his training regimen. Even less-divisive players like Bannister and Adam Ottavino were criticized for “overthinking it” simply for trying to incorporate data into their game plans. It is at times stunning to read about just how calcified the industry’s player development staffs were and, in some cases, still are.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 04, 2019 at 07:55 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, book review, player development

Monday, June 03, 2019

Inside the Astros’ cutting-edge approach to minor-league pitching development – The Athletic

As the Astros’ reliance on technology has increased, their number of scouts in the field has decreased. Their 2019 media guide lists only seven amateur area scouts, two cross-checkers and senior scouting advisor Charlie Gonzalez under domestic scouting supervisor Kris Gross. They have two Houston-based amateur scouting analysts plus one dedicated video technician tasked with collecting video of prospects around the country. Their international staff under department manager Eve Rosenbaum consists of an assistant director, two scouting supervisors, four traditional scouts and four video scouts.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 03, 2019 at 03:28 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, pay site, player development

How the Houston Astros Revolutionized Player Development - The Ringer

Looking forward to reading this book.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 03, 2019 at 01:16 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, player development

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Astros send prospect Forrest Whitley to minor league injured list with shoulder fatigue - Houston Chronicle

Amid an awful start to his Class AAA season, Forrest Whitley was placed on the minor league injured list with right shoulder fatigue on Wednesday, general manager Jeff Luhnow said.

No structural damage was discerned from visits with Astros doctors. Whitley will rehab at the Astros spring training facility in West Palm Beach, Fla., Luhnow said.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 30, 2019 at 11:20 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, forrest whitley

MLB roundup: Cubs’ win over Astros marred by fan’s injury

Kyle Hendricks pitched eight effective innings, Kyle Schwarber and Kris Bryant homered, and the visiting Chicago Cubs averted a series sweep at the hands of the Houston Astros with a 2-1 interleague victory Wednesday.

The game was briefly delayed in the fourth inning when Chicago’s Albert Almora Jr. hit a foul ball that struck a young fan in the stands. The Astros confirmed after the game that the child was taken to a hospital, but according to Houston radio station KBME 790 AM (SportsTalk790), the fan was expected to be all right.

The incident shook up Almora, who struck out to finish the at-bat. After the half-inning, he was seen sobbing after talking to a security guard stationed near where the child was seated.

Hendricks (5-4) allowed one run on four hits and one walk with seven strikeouts while throwing a season-high 108 pitches.

 

QLE Posted: May 30, 2019 at 10:23 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: albert almora, astros, cubs, fans hit by projectiles

Saturday, May 25, 2019

Houston Astros expecting bad news on George Springer injury

The Houston Astros beat the defending World Series champion Boston Red Sox on Friday night, but the win came at a potentially big cost.

George Springer, the Astros outfielder having an MVP-caliber season, left the game at Minute Maid Park in the eighth inning after suffering a left leg injury. Springer slid to catch a fly ball off the bat of Red Sox’ shortstop Xander Bogaerts in foul territory and immediately came up limping before walking off the field.

Manager A.J. Hinch said after the game Springer will be evaluated and is likely headed to the IL, but he’s expecting the worst.

“I’m not looking forward to the diagnosis, to be honest,” Hinch said. “It doesn’t look very good.”

 

QLE Posted: May 25, 2019 at 06:04 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, george springer, injuries

Friday, May 17, 2019

LEADING OFF: Greinke exam, Turner tagged, CC faces Rays

Arizona ace Zack Greinke is set for an MRI after making an early exit in his last start.

Greinke pitched shutout ball into the eighth inning against the Pirates until leaving in the eighth inning because of abdominal tightness.

“It’s not too bad,” Greinke said. “Just didn’t seem like a good idea to try to push it.”

Greinke (6-1) has a 1.09 ERA in his last six starts, allowing five earned runs in 41 1/3 innings.

I thought that loads of people spent hours at the gym to obtain abdominal tightness….

 

QLE Posted: May 17, 2019 at 03:57 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, athletics, c.c. sabathia, hit batsmen, justin turner, zack greinke

Saturday, May 11, 2019

MLB roundup: Verlander, Astros stifle Rangers

Justin Verlander allowed one hit over seven strong innings, and the Houston Astros belted three solo homers while overcoming an injury to star Jose Altuve to beat the visiting Texas Rangers 3-0 on Friday night for their third consecutive victory.

Verlander, who improved to 6-1 with a 2.51 ERA, struck out eight and yielded only Asdrubal Cabrera’s single to lead off the fifth inning as the Astros won for the sixth time in seven games. It’s the third time in Verlander’s career that he has allowed just one hit in a start against the Rangers.

However, Houston’s latest victory might have come with a price as Altuve exited with left hamstring discomfort in the bottom of the first after beating out an infield hit. The team listed him as day-to-day.

For the rest of the night, the Astros were just fine without Altuve. Jake Marisnick clubbed his third homer of the season, a deep shot to right-center in the third inning. In the seventh, with two outs and Texas starter Lance Lynn in a nice groove, Yuli Gurriel and Robinson Chirinos delivered back-to-back home runs to pad the Astros’ advantage.

So, any subjects of interest that we’ve missed?

QLE Posted: May 11, 2019 at 04:38 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, jose altuve, justin verlander, rangers

Friday, May 10, 2019

Heavy downpours slip through Minute Maid Park roof

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK)—Houston Astros fans got a bit of a downpour as the home team took on the Texas Rangers.

During Thursday night’s game, even though Minute Maid Park had its roof closed, the heavy rain still managed to pour in on their game.

Fans shared their images as they hurried to exit the wet baseball stadium.

So, how long before Astros management uses this as an excuse to get another dome?

 

QLE Posted: May 10, 2019 at 08:35 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, dome, minute maid park, rain

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

This pitcher went full ‘Matrix’ to avoid line drive

 

Jim Furtado Posted: April 17, 2019 at 08:58 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, collin mchugh

Monday, April 15, 2019

MLB roundup: Astros sweep Mariners, run win streak to 9

Aledmys Diaz led off the seventh inning with a home run to break a tie as the Houston Astros rallied to defeat the host Seattle Mariners 3-2 on Sunday afternoon, extending their winning streak to nine games.

Jose Altuve’s homer streak ended at five consecutive games, but the Astros swept the three-game series at T-Mobile Park to pull within a game of the first-place Mariners in the American League West.

Right-hander Gerrit Cole (1-2) pitched six strong innings for his first victory of the season. He gave up two runs on four hits with no walks and 11 strikeouts.

Seattle’s Mitch Haniger led off the bottom of the first with a home run off Cole, hitting a 1-2 pitch into the bullpen in left field. That gave the Mariners homers in each of their first 18 games to begin the season, extending their major league record.

Well, this answers the question as for whether or not any of the teams dominant last year are having a good start this year….

 

QLE Posted: April 15, 2019 at 07:44 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, mariners, sweep

Saturday, April 13, 2019

MLB roundup: Astros continue power surge

Jose Altuve and Yuli Gurriel hit grand slams as the Houston Astros defeated the host Seattle Mariners 10-6 Friday night.

It was the fourth consecutive game in which Altuve has gone deep, and he has five home runs over that span.

George Springer also homered for the Astros, who extended their winning streak to seven games. The Mariners had their six-game winning streak snapped.

Tom Murphy hit a solo homer in the ninth inning to extend the Mariners’ major league record of consecutive games with a home run to start a season to 16.

I hope the Astros’ electronic equipment can survive this.

 

QLE Posted: April 13, 2019 at 07:02 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, grand slam

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Altuve Homers Twice as Astros Sweep Yankees for First Time

HOUSTON (AP) — Jose Altuve needed video review to confirm his first home run Wednesday night.

His second shot was a no-doubter — just like the Houston Astros’ status as a team to beat in the American League.

Altuve hit two homers, Carlos Correa homered with three RBIs and the Astros completed their first ever sweep of the New York Yankees with an 8-6 win Wednesday night.

Well, there’s always a first for everything….

 

QLE Posted: April 11, 2019 at 06:02 AM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, jose altuve, sweep, yankees

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Source: Astros, Verlander reach $66M extension

The Houston Astros and ace Justin Verlander have agreed to a two-year, $66 million contract extension through the 2021 season, a league source with knowledge of the deal confirmed to ESPN on Saturday.

Astros owner Jim Crane on Friday had said there was mutual interest for an extension with the 36-year-old right-hander.

The news was first reported by KRIV-TV in Houston.

So, is this how long the Astros think their window will last, or just how long they think it will last with Verlander?

 

QLE Posted: March 24, 2019 at 07:05 AM | 54 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, contract extensions, justin verlander

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Astros set to contend for another title

HOUSTON (AP) — The Houston Astros entered last season looking to defend the title after winning their first World Series in 2017.

Being eliminated in the ALCS by the Boston Red Sox has done nothing to shake their confidence as the 2019 season arrives.

“I don’t think the feeling’s any different,” manager AJ Hinch said. “I think the way people talk about things is a little different ... there’s an expectation of winning here and there should be. We have a good team.”

The Astros won their second AL West crown last year after setting a franchise record with 103 wins. They swept the Cleveland Indians in the ALDS before injuries to stars Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa contributed to a 4-1 series loss to the Red Sox in the next round.

And, if winning the World Series doesn’t work out, they could always contend for titles in various other fields….

 

QLE Posted: March 21, 2019 at 08:22 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, world series

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Report: Astros, Alex Bregman Agree to Five-Year, $100 Million Extension

The Houston Astros and third baseman Alex Bregman have agreed to a five-year, $100 million extension, according to Fox 26’s Mark Berman.

Overall, Bregman, 24, will be with the Astros for the next six years since he is already under contract with the club for the impending 2019 season. The extension buys out his next three arbitration-eligible years (2020-22) and the first two years of his free agency (2023-24) and comes after Bregman recently criticized the Astros’ spending.

Houston renewed Bregman’s contract for the 2019 season last week at $640,500, but the third baseman was upset that he and the club couldn’t reach a higher agreement.

 

 

QLE Posted: March 20, 2019 at 07:42 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: alex bregman, astros, contract extensions

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Top 39 Prospects: Houston Astros | FanGraphs Baseball

I’ve mentioned this before but keeping their farm system so productive will require them to continue to churn through their prospects. As they reach the 40-Man bottleneck they will need to trade some of their excess AAA-ish prospects for other teams’ lower level prospects. This effort will only get more difficult as their front office people move around the league and more teams start valuing players similarly. It will be interesting to watch things play out over the next 5-10 years. How long will they be able to keep their competitive window open?

This is a good farm system even though there are some clear potential long-term pitfalls from having narrow criteria for the players the org targets. For one, the types of pitchers Houston seems to like are becoming more sought after by other teams as a better understanding of how pitching works permeates baseball. Fewer pitchers of this type will be available to Houston as a result, but of course, Houston is likely also identifying players who can be altered to become this type of pitcher, even if they aren’t one yet. One day, there might be repercussions for having a staff full of very similar pitchers, but there’s no way of knowing that.

The Astros are clearly ahead of other teams around the league in some other areas, too. In some ways, it’s becoming easier for those lagging behind to catch up because they can also look to Baltimore and Atlanta, both of which have former Houston employees in prominent roles, to spot trends. In other ways, it’s getting harder to learn about Houston from the outside, as paranoia and acrimony have begun to impact industry discourse about the Astros in a way that makes it difficult to know which rumors about them are true and which are BS. Some of the things that have been mentioned consistently, and which seem plausible and interesting, include experimentation with visual machine learning and work with topical substances to improve pitch spin/movement. Of course, all the Rapsodo and Motus sleeve stuff is already widely known or knowable with quick use of Google.

Expect the 40-man crunch to continue apace here as teams gobble up the overflow of Astros pitching that can’t quite crack their roster.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 14, 2019 at 11:19 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, prospects

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

The Houston Astros Still Have More Pitchers Than Your Favorite Team - The Ringer

The Astros front office has set themselves up for a sustained run. It’s not easy to stock your farm system while winning. As difficult as that is, the toughest thing to do, however, is being disciplined enough not to trade your top prospects to maximize your chances to win **this year**. Of course, getting your championship out the way early reduces the pressure. The Dodgers have a similar vision as the Astros. Without sealing the deal, though, the pressure for the Dodgers to “go for it this year” will keep on building.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 13, 2019 at 02:59 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: astros

Astros pitcher Francis Martes, recovering from Tommy John surgery, suspended 80 games for PEDs

Astros pitcher Francis Martes – currently recovering from Tommy John surgery – was given an 80-game suspension for violating the league’s drug policy.

Martes tested positive for clomiphene, a performance-enhancing substance, Major League Baseball said in a release Tuesday.

The 23-year-old didn’t pitch in the majors in 2018, but made 32 appearances (four starts) for Houston in 2017. Martes underwent Tommy John surgery in August and wasn’t expected to return to game action until late in the year, if he returned at all this season.

He’s not trying to become pregnant, is he?

 

QLE Posted: March 13, 2019 at 07:47 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, francis martes, peds

Monday, March 11, 2019

Miley’s former coach helps him get back on track

After two years of frustration while he was a member of the Orioles – he posted a 5.75 ERA and 1.7 WHIP in 43 starts—veteran left-hander Wade Miley got a call from an old friend back home in the winter of 2017 offering to help him rejuvenate his career.

“I made it real simple,” Chris Westcott said. “You’ve got two options: You either work hard, or you’re going to milk cows. It’s up to you.”

Miley certainly isn’t against hard work, but throwing a baseball is all he had ever done, and he wasn’t up for a career change at 31 years old. Miley put his faith in Westcott, his pitching coach in Louisiana since he was 15 years old, to help get him into shape and back on track.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 11, 2019 at 11:53 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: astros, pitchers, wade miley

Page {e2c518d61874f2d4a14bbfb9087a7c2dcurrent_page} of {e2c518d61874f2d4a14bbfb9087a7c2dtotal_pages} pages {e2c518d61874f2d4a14bbfb9087a7c2dpagination_links} | Site Archive

 

 

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
The Ghost of Sox Fans Past
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT - Catch-All Pop Culture Extravaganza (June 2019)
(818 - 2:32pm, Jun 17)
Last: Davo cant be eatin thirty hot dogs every day

NewsblogOT - NBA thread (Playoffs through off-season)
(3900 - 2:30pm, Jun 17)
Last: Der-K: at 10% emotional investment

NewsblogPadres, Rockies set new modern era record with 92 combined runs in four-game series
(16 - 2:24pm, Jun 17)
Last: Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad)

NewsblogYanks acquire Encarnacion from M's
(62 - 2:19pm, Jun 17)
Last: rconn23

NewsblogOT Soccer Thread - Baldrick Reports Live
(326 - 2:06pm, Jun 17)
Last: AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther

Hall of Merit2020 Hall of Merit Ballot Discussion
(193 - 1:57pm, Jun 17)
Last: Dr. Chaleeko

NewsblogThere's no gerrymandering when everyone's in OMNICHATTER!, for June 17, 2019
(1 - 12:54pm, Jun 17)
Last: Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim

NewsblogKenley Jansen executed a rare intentional balk last night
(16 - 12:49pm, Jun 17)
Last: Athletic Supporter is USDA certified lean

NewsblogBrodie Van Wagenen's Mets take doesn't match what we're seeing
(8 - 12:40pm, Jun 17)
Last: Never Give an Inge (Dave)

NewsblogOlney -- Yankees can overpower all rivals after Encarnacion trade
(2 - 12:08pm, Jun 17)
Last: Brian

Gonfalon CubsThat was fun
(260 - 12:01pm, Jun 17)
Last: Moses Taylor, aka Hambone Fakenameington

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 6-17-2019
(2 - 10:47am, Jun 17)
Last: Eric J can SABER all he wants to

NewsblogYou Are Cordially Invited to SOFTBALL IN THE CITY
(133 - 10:45am, Jun 17)
Last: Shooty would run in but these bone spurs hurt!

Newsblog6 suspects, including gunman, arrested in Ortiz shooting – Boston Herald
(83 - 10:22am, Jun 17)
Last: Tom Nawrocki

NewsblogLetting teams trade picks is MLB Draft's path out of obscurity
(20 - 9:32am, Jun 17)
Last: Rusty Priske

Page rendered in 1.2985 seconds
164 querie(s) executed