FILE - AUGUST 20: According to reports, Roger Clemens, 50-years-old, has signed with the independent Atlantic League Sugar Land Skeeters. NEW YORK - AUGUST 02: Starting pitcher Roger Clemens #22 of the New York Yankees delivers against the Chicago White Sox at Yankee Stadium on August 2, 2007 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Michael Heiman/Getty Images)
Some things to talk about while I shake off that managerial search headline from Monday. Again, sorry, everyone...
1) Roger Clemens and a comeback - You knew I was going to talk about Roger Clemens joining the Sugar Land Skeeters here, didn't you? You're expecting me to make snarky jokes about Roger Clemens joining said Sugar Land Skeeters, Roger Clemens pitching Saturday night for said Sugar Land Skeeters and generally make fun of Roger Clemens and possibly the Sugar Land Skeeters in one feel swoop. Roger Clemens. Sugar Land Skeeters.
Phew. I think that did it. We successfully tricked search engines to look for that story (which, honestly, will probably be dead by today), and we can talk about something that actually matters. After all, Clemens isn't coming back for this particular Astros team, even as a PR stunt.
But, one guy we SHOULD be talking about is Delino DeShields, Jr. We can talk about Clemens, too, but in a different way we'll save for later. Back to DDJ, though, who set an Astros record for most steals in a minor league season with his 88th and 89th steals Monday night.
Billy Hamilton has been doing crazy things in the steals market and DDJ is waay behind him. Yet, DDJ is also waay ahead of everyone not named Billy Hamilton in stolen base prowess. The fact he's doing this a such a young age and actually hitting, showing some power, etc., should make everyone a lot higher on his value heading into next season.
For the record, no Houston Astro has ever stolen 80 bases. No Astro has ever stolen 70 bases for that matter. If DDJ makes contact regularly enough to reach the majors, he's a lock to set the club record for steals. Not even Michael Bourn was as prolific in the minors as DDJ has been. That should tell you how special he could be.
2) You Make The Call contest - That's right, today marks the opening of the fan voting to whittle down the Top 10 in the Astros You Make the Call contest. Interviews were held last Friday and Saturday (before the Saturday night fiasco went down), and apparently videos will be posted today. Go check them out and vote on your favorite.
I'm a little surprised that only one of the finalists is a woman. Figured they might try and "sideline reporter" this up a bit, so good on them for not taking the easy route. Of course, bad on them for not making things a little more even. Or bad on me for caring whether the contestants are men or women in the first place.
Don't know if the other nine contestants are TCBers, but Robert Parker's name rung a bell. Sure enough, he has been a member here since 2009, though he hasn't been active for a while. Still, I'll take even a tangential relationship here.
Go, vote, decide who will be Dave and Brett's intern, who they can torture all they want. I'm sure Dave will have whoever wins watching Stanford games on a loop all season, or calling Mark Appel's dorm and then hanging up over and over again.
3) Under Armor Game - In case you missed it, they held the annual Under Armor Game at Wrigley Field on Saturday, with a ton more prospects showing their wares. One name in particular was highlighted by Matt Garrioch over at Minor League Ball, and you may be familiar with him. I know Sean is: