Some things to talk about while we await the arrival of baseball...
1) Jacob Nix
playing for IMG
Well, we got the first answer to the eligibility questions that haunt both Jacob Nix and Brady Aiken. After Houston negotiated with both in a very public way, including an "advisor" speaking for Aiken in a way
Except, the NCAA usually has thoughts on amateur players who have agents. Those thoughts are not kind to said amateurs.
Jacob Nix settled his grievance with the Astros, getting an undisclosed sum of money from the team while the Astros avoided being penalized with a possible loss of
That's a quick and dirty summary of the situation. If you want a more in-depth read, here's a link to our coverage from last summer.
Well, fast-forward to this winter. Nix and Aiken still would like to play college baseball, thank you, and maybe play professionally (just not for the Astros). Those eligibility concerns still hold, especially for Nix, who may have technically been paid by a professional baseball team.
That's the framework for this announcement that Nix will be playing baseball this spring for IMG's post-graduate team.
keithlaw(@keithlaw) January 12, 2015
IMG is a sports agency that must have ties to Nix. This way, he skirts the whole eligibility question entirely, can still work out against competition and show off for scouts, while entering the 2015 draft.
It will be fascinating to see how teams evaluate Nix, who did nothing in this whole ordeal to lower his draft stock. Now that he's not going to college, will Nix get drafted higher than the fifth round? Will he fall because of the lack of competition he'll face this season?
Relatively short article by John Dewan on Bill James Online's free site talks about the best
Here's a brief explanation of the metric used to compile the list.
Net Gain is a Bill James-created statistic that comprehensively measures
baserunningby including advancements on hits and outs in addition tostolen bases. By that measure-as well as some other comprehensive baserunningstatistics such as BsR, explained here-the Nationals were the best baserunning team in 2014 and actually more than twice as successful as the Royals.
The Astros finished ninth on the list, just ahead of those
Well, first, I wonder how much of that number was directly influenced by Jose Altuve's brilliance. He had a great season on the
Second, we might be seeing one of the reasons Bo Porter was let go. I know, I know, the last thing we need is another Porter debate.
But, think about this. When he was hired, Porter wanted the Astros to be super aggressive on the bases. That led to some really dumb decisions and bad
What if Porter wanted to be more
Just something to ponder.
Trio of Astros prospects get career advice
No, not the kind from Rick Ankiel. The kind from MLB's rookie symposium.
— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) January 8, 2015
Astroshave sent Foltynewicz, Santana and Wojciechowski to MLB’s Rookie Career Development Program, which started today and runs thru Sun.
There's so much that players need to focus on just to make the major leagues, sometimes the life skills portion of their development can fall behind. Heck, even if they're terribly well-adjusted humans, being thrust into the world of MLB can be disorienting.
These kinds of rookie symposiums are great ideas. They can help players adjust and learn what to look for in the next year. Sure, there are still plenty of cautionary tales in the NFL after football started a mandatory one of these for all its draft picks. But, if it helps at all, it's worth it.
Here's hoping Folty, Domingo and Wojo got some use out of their weekend in the symposium.