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Astros Crawfish Boil: November 4, 2022

The Houston Astros are coming home to finish the job.

MLB: World Series-Houston Astros at Philadelphia Phillies Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Verlander finally shook the World Series monkey off his back.

He had been 0-6 over his first eight World Series starts. This, after compiling a 259-138 record through his career between the regular season and the pre-WS postseason series. His triumph put the Astros ahead of the Phillies, three-games-to-two and one game from glory.

We’re the bad guys, and that’s ok

Most of the baseball world likes to talk about how the Astros “stole” a World Series title. Those of us on the ground here have long defended the few remaining pieces from that 2017 juggernaut, but maybe it would be ok if now we just let it go. Seems to be working for our boys in orange, right?

It’s not our problem that the club got in trouble the way they did. If we’re being honest here, it’s likely that every team cheats to some degree. The Astros biggest crime is being mind-numbingly dumb about their method. Banging on trash cans? Really? Furthermore, it’s not really our place to “get over” it, it’s everyone else’s. Building onto that, everyone else doesn’t have to get over it. They can be mad as long as they like. We’re the bad guys and now the rest of Major League Baseball needs to deal with it. Or not. I don’t care, and neither should you.

The Yankees have been the villains of baseball for over a century. It’s time for a new sheriff for the next 100 years. Some may point to the rivalry between the two, but Houston has demolished the Bombers with some regularity through their current run of postseason success, eliminating the older of the two New York teams four times in the last six seasons. That’s not a rivalry, that’s a war crime.

Astros News

How Trey Mancini used his glove to save the day.

Mattress Mack continues to stay in the news. This is the hero we deserve.

The pizza guy meant no disrespect to the Astros, it’s just that he didn’t want to miss the game.

Dusty Baker may be the Forrest Gump of major league baseball.

Keep up to speed on Yuli Gurriel’s playing condition after his base running collision in Game Five.

MLB News

Here’s a story on Jose Canseco attempting to stay relevant by advising Aaron Judge to “dump” New York.

Over half of Major League Baseball has made it to the World Series since the Yankees last played in November.

Mariano Rivera and Barry Larkin lament the lack of African-American MLB players in the World Series for the first time in over seventy years. If you consider this a political stance, maybe try separating your fandom with your politics.

This is great.

A look inside baseball champagne celebrations.

Oops! All Astros: Colton Gordon

Colton Gordon is a six-foot-four, 225 lb. left-handed pitcher from St. Petersburg, FL. Born on December 20, 1998, he was Houston’s eighth-round choice in 2021, taken 238th off the board out of the University of Central Florida. He signed a contract with the Astros that included a $127,500 signing bonus. To date, 11 players have made it to the major leagues after getting taken at the 238th overall position, led by CF Al Bumbry (24.5 WAR) and 3B Ray Knight (13.3 WAR).

Currently Houston’s 24th-ranked prospect (according to MLB Pipeline), Gordon has a 55-grade curve, along with three 50-grade secondary offerings, a curve, a slider, and a change.

Gordon lacks overpowering stuff but helps his cause by pounding the strike zone and making few mistakes. He misses bats and induces weak contact. - MLB Pipeline

Gordon didn’t make his professional debut until the 2022 season, in the Florida Coast League at the rookie-level. Over his first six appearances, he gradually ramped up from one inning to three, eventually striking out 22 in his first 13 pro innings and holding opponents to a .188/.220/.417 slash line.

In the final week of July, Gordon was pushed up to the Low-A level to make his debut with the Fayetteville Woodpeckers. He made five appearances in total, three starts and two relief trips, while holding the opposition to a .183/.213/.254 slash line. His final two performances spanned nine innings during which Gordon allowed one run on no walks and two hits while striking out 13.

Gordon’s performance allowed Houston to quickly promote him once again, to the High-A Asheville Tourists. In his final start, on September 11, he struck out nine over 5 23 innings, giving up no runs on no walks and three hits in a 9-1 triumph over the Greenville Drive.

Gordon ended up whiffing 78 batters in 53 23 innings in total, accounting for a 13.1 K/9 while racking up a 0.801 WHIP. Opponents hit .182/.214/.323 in 202 plate appearances, and Gordon walked only eight batters.

Since the close of the regular minor league season, Gordon has been pitching for the Surprise Saguaros in the Arizona Fall League. He’s 2-1 so far with a head scratching 7.43 ERA, but that’s in a pretty small sample size against mostly double- and triple-A players. I expect he’ll be working the kinks out without much ado.

Gordon has been superb at each stop so far on his professional journey. I’d expect him to begin the 2023 season at the Double-A level with the Corpus Christi Hooks. He’ll be knocking on MLB’s door sometime in 2024.