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Weekend Links: Acta, Attendance and More

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Here are a few of the more interesting links and stories from the past couple of days:

  • Here is a nice piece on the three finalists for Cleveland's managerial job. Of interest is Manny Acta's views on a bullpen. The thing that's really interesting to me is his desire for a guy who can go multiple innings. That's unique in a world that has evolved into these specialized bullpens and makes him sort of the anti-LaRussa. Which I like immensely.
  • File this under, 'Reason why I'm glad Drayton is our owner'. Granted, it's a short list.
  • This is disturbing to me for reasons which I'll go into now. One, isn't Glen Barker supposed to be our Pacific Rim guru? Why aren't the Astros in on this kid? He's young, hasn't grown up in the Japanese professional style of baseball yet, and could be a good prospect if the money is right. Are we missing something here? Two, if we're not getting good players out of our Asian pipeline (two signings in two years does not a pipeline make), then why did we shut down our Latin American operations. Sure, we're starting an academy in the Dominican, but who isn't? We're a little late to that party, but we are still forging ahead. Three, the Rangers are there?? Seriously?? Their owner is in hock up to his eyeballs and they're about to auction off the team at the State Fair. Why are they in on this and the Astros are not? Methinks Drayton doesn't want to spend serious cash on international free agents, when the return is so small. Can I blame him? Maybe not but I'd sure like to.
  • Speaking of our venerable owner, don't show him these numbers. We may never get another Texas A&M night at Minute Maid again. Not that I've actually gone to one before, but Minute Maid isn't as cold as the Great Canadian North all the time like Olsen Field is, so it's a better place to watch a baseball game with Aggies. For explanation, two of the coldest times I've ever spent at a baseball game happened at Olsen. Once, I was covering a game there, and it was so cold, I couldn't even keep score, my fingers were shivering so badly. I kept putting my hand in my pocket between pitches hoping to warm it up. This is with gloves on people! I'm slightly chilly just thinking about it.
  • In an Astros context, I guess we could talk about how the Kids Watch for Free promotion must not have worked as well as planned, since those were some of the lowest numbers on the graph. I wonder if Drayton knew this and green-light it anyway so he wouldn't lose as much money. That sly devil...
  • It may take you a little while to scroll down to this, but look at who is second on the all-time postseason saves list...none other than Brad Lidge! Who knew?? As bad as he can be, Lidge has been Lights Out more times in the postseason than Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley and is second only to future Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera. Not pictured on this list: the fact that Michael Bourn is last on the list for postseason saves with zero. 

    Still a good trade, no?