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Astros Crawfish Boil: November 10, 2022

It’s going to be a long (off)season.

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MLB: Houston Astros-Championship Parade Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports

Post-Postseason: Day Five

There’s four seasons where I live. The rest of my family follow the accepted practice of recognizing spring, summer, fall (or autumn), and winter. Not me. There’s Spring Training, regular season, playoffs, and winter.

I don’t know how the rest of you do it, but I am certainly having a lot of trouble existing without baseball on the tube (or laptop, or phone). I’ve taken to randomly generating a ballgame (MLB.TV keeps archives for the past three seasons, and you can find full game replays on YouTube all the way back to 2009), and watching it. Last night I watched Facing Nolan on Netflix (fantastic movie, btw, check it if you haven’t), then rolled the dice and landed on August 27, 2014 with the Yankees and Tigers. Opening Day is on March 30. Opening Day is on March 30. Opening Day is on March 30.

How do you guys scratch the baseball itch? Hot Stove isn’t that interesting.

Astros News

The lack of a solid offer to James Click, who has guided the Astros since 2020 seems a bit insulting. Check out the full story at SI.

This morning the Astros front office received pizza delivery, courtesy of the Atlanta Braves. It’s a relatively new tradition, but one that I hope lasts for a long time.

Dusty Baker signed a one-year deal, which also seems a bit underwhelming considering his track record over the last 50-some years.

This years’ World Series was the second least-watched since they started keeping track. Still that may be a little misleading as tracking viewer’s habits has become a more complicated process, with a lot of different viewing options.

A lot of players have credited backstop, Martín Maldonado as the real reason the Astros are World Series champions. This is thanks to his preparation, which has been described as “world class.”

It’s been revealed that Justin Verlander will likely not sign for less than 2 years and $72 million. More at FanDuel.

MLB News

The Mariners didn’t extend Mitch Haniger a qualifying offer. They want to keep him in the fold, they just don’t think he’s worth the $19.65 million that a QO guarantees. He’s now free to negotiate with all 30 teams.

Jake Odorizzi is back in Texas.

With no plans to cut ties with their big two, the Angels are still set on reducing their payroll.

Where the heck are the A’s going to end up? It doesn’t look like Oakland....

Oops! All Astros: Hector Nieves

Hector Nieves is a six-foot-three, 185 lb. left-handed batting righty throwing infielder from Mayaguez, PR. Born on July 8, 2003, he was a 19th round pick of Houston in 2021, with the 568th overall selection. Of the seven players picked at that spot to reach the major leagues, David Price (40.1 WAR) is the most prolific.

Nieves was drafted out of the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy to a contract that featured a $180,000 bonus. Carlos Correa was also taken out of the institution, back in 2012. Mostly used as a shortstop right from the start, Nieves joined the FCL Astros Orange straightway, going 19-for-85 in 26 games with two home runs and 10 RBI.

Remaining with the Orange squad for the 2022 campaign, Nieves appeared in 32 games for the affiliate, slashing .212/.302/.254 and striking out 29 times in 116 plate appearances, a whiff-rate of exactly a quarter. He also drew 11 walks and successfully stole a base on four-of-six attempts. On July 16, he collected a walk and two singles, scoring a run and knocking another in as the Orange squad topped the Astros Blue squad by a 10-6 final.

There’s no real hurry in developing Nieves. Despite it being his second season as a professional, he was still a year younger than the “average” FCL participant. With that in mind, his stats alone likely aren't enough to justify pushing him up to the Low-A Fayetteville Woodpeckers. I’d look for him to start 2023 back with FCL if the Astros elect to keep him on.