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From ESPN-Starwave
Bags Makes His Arrival

First fullsquad workout today, and while Preston Wilson will participate, the story, as both the official site and The Chronicle are very well aware, is Jeff Bagwell.

When the story about Bagwell and his shoulder and the insurance policy first acquired its legs about six weeks ago, I wasn't quite sure what we'd be seeing the first time Jeff Bagwell tried to step onto a field at the Osceola complex.  A security guard instructed to bar his way at all costs didn't seem likely, but given the veiled rhetoric the club had dispensed, it didn't seem out of the question, either.

But this morning, as the sun rises above those Central Florida ballfields, it is looking like such an ugly scenario is not going to play out.

The situation, as they say at the Pentagon, has de-escalated.  And it has been the Astros that have done the de-escalating.  The position of Axelrod and Bagwell has not changed at all in six weeks, whereas it is the club that has decided to, um, curb the skepticism, that they had earlier expressed.

Drayton has even told Brian McTaggart that he hopes to shake Bagwell's hand today.

I guess they figure it's better to scream and yell at an insurance company than at a locally iconic athlete.  And they'd be right; but I still have to imagine that McLane and Purpura and Tal Smith and the rest of them both hope and expect for Bagwell's efforts to fizzle this spring, even if it won't be the Astros who are doing any of the hindering.

As you'd expect he would, Brad Ausmus has expressed himself quite eloquently on the matter with Alysson Footer, and he is obviously of the opinion that Bagwell has been disserved somewhat by the organization AND that his comeback this spring will be successful.

I wonder what McLane thought of that?