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Astros Crawfish Boil: July 16, 2015

Start your day off right with a quick look at all the up to date happenings with your Houston Astros and from the baseball world at large.

Jose Altuve fielding ground balls during Batting Practice at the 2015 All Star Game
Jose Altuve fielding ground balls during Batting Practice at the 2015 All Star Game
David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Houston Astros News

Capitalizing on the Astros’ Success | FanGraphs Baseball
An in-depth look at the 2015 Astros so far - and where to go from here.

Astros will dive into second half competing |
HOUSTON -- The Astros hit the All-Star break desperately needing a few days off to regroup following a whirlwind first half in which they led the American League West for much of the season -- and by as many as seven games -- before falling a half-game behind the Angels on Sunday after losing six in a row.

Stock Watch: First-Half All-Risers team | News | The Official Site of Minor League Baseball
Houston Astros well represented with surprising minor league performers Nottingham and Phillips, Kemp and A.J. Reed honorable mentions.

Astros manager A.J. Hinch soaks in All-Star scene - Ultimate Astros

Astros may sign college draftees before July 17 deadline - Ultimate Astros

Contention casts Astros as trade-deadline buyers - Houston Chronicle
For the first time in a long time, the Astros can start to consider the chance (which, per Baseball Prospectus, is 6.9 percent, fourth highest in the American League).

Houston Astros: Jeff Samardzija could be the cheapest trade target
With the trade deadline slowly approaching, the Houston Astros will hit the market in search for additional help within their starting rotations while sitting in second-place in the A.L. West behind the Los Angeles Angels by just a half game

Report: Astros, Blue Jays, Royals aggressively pursuing Johnny Cueto |
The trade market for Cincinnati Reds pitcher Johnny Cueto continues to heat up, as the Houston Astros, Toronto Blue Jays, and Kansas City Royals have been the most aggressive in their attempts to acquire him, reports USA Today’s Bob Nightengale.

Jim Crane and J.D. Martinez have a fun reunion - Ultimate Astros
"Congratulations," Crane told Martinez as the slugger headed into the AL clubhouse during batting practice Tuesday at Great American Ball Park. "You look great. I’m happy for you. I knew you could do it.

Around the Major Leagues

Teardown Artist "
San Diego Padres General Manager A.J. Preller has been extremely aggressive since assuming the reigns in 2014, and has subsequently dug his franchise a huge hole with very little to show for it.

Kris Bryant, enjoying life as a Cub, never expected Astros to draft him - Ultimate Astros

Ask BA: Where Would Draftees Rank On Midseason Top 50? -
Baseball America takes a look at ranking some of the 2015 draft class among their midseason Top 50 prospects report.

Late major leaguer Darryl Hamilton to be honored - Ultimate Astros

Greatest living players, Franchise Fours named |
CINCINNATI -- It was one of those moments in All-Star history that will be talked about for many years to come, and what made Major League Baseball's Franchise Four unveiling even more special Tuesday night was the way it happened in the most traditional baseball town and the way it led right into Mike Trout's home run.