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Sunday Morning Astros, etc Round Up

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A Hardball Times' article tells us something that we already knew: Here Come the 'Stros

Beyond the Boxscore doesn't like our chances of making the playoffs...at all.

Lance Berkman was his usual witty self when asked about the Cardinals picking up Matt Holliday:

"Well," Berkman said, "If they had gotten (ace righthander Roy) Halladay instead of Holliday then we might be in some serious trouble, taking nothing away from Matt 'cause he's an offensive force."

The steroid discussion is one that has had many influential people weighing in over the years. The one person whom the controversy would theoretically affect the most, former homerun king Hank Aaron, has been fairly mum on the subject. Until now, that is. Aaron has come out recently and stated that:

"The thing is, do you put these guys in, or do you put an asterisk beside their names and say, 'Hey, they did it, but here's why?'" Aaron told several reporters in Cooperstown. "To be safe, that's the only way I see that you can do it."

I don't know how I missed this, but Vicente Padilla has swine flu. He's the first professional athlete in the U.S. to have caught the worldwide bug.

Will Carroll throws some math at us to explain why the Astros decided to sit Lance Berkman a few days, only to place him on the DL:

There’s been a lot of discussion about why a team will hold out a player for several days, then DL him. Whether it’s Gary Sheffield or Lance Berkman,  there’s a reason that most overlook. Remember when you asked your algebra teacher when you’d ever use this stuff? Mrs. Pickett, you were right.

The simple equation is: (15-x)Va >= 15Vb

where x is number of days lost, V is MLVr for a player (though feel free to substitute in some other daily value stat here), a is the starter and b is the replacement. Remember that "b" isn’t linear - sometimes the backup is on the bench and the true replacement is going into the backup’s bench role. It’s a very complex set of factors that requires working it out by hand and almost always in retrospect, and even then it’s an estimate.

Shaq vs. Phelps in the pool. Who ya got?