Welcome to the Friday Boil!
Houston Astros News
Astros insider: Takeaways from a split with Red Sox (houstonchronicle.com)
Source: Astros to recall pitcher Ronel Blanco (click2houston.com)
How future for Houston Astros rookie catcher could look a lot different (houston.sportsmap.com)
AL West News
Fisher unsure where A’s might play after Coliseum lease expires (nbcsportsbayarea.com)
Playoff Race: Seattle Mariners into 2nd wild card after Astros lose (sports.mynorthwest.com)
Why is everyone mad at the Mariners 2B Jose Caballero? (sodomojo.com)
Do not buy into the doom and gloom surrounding the Texas Rangers (dallasnews.com)
MLB News (mlb.com)
Rookie — DSL Astros Orange drop Game One of the DSL Quarterfinals, 7-1 to the DSL Pirates.
Consuegra, Williams Help ‘Clones Fly Past Tourists, 12-5 (oursportscentral.com)
Houston Astros Birthdays
RHP Dooley Womack (84) pitched in 30 games out of the bullpen for the 1968 Astros, striking out 32 in 51 1⁄3 innings and holding his opponents to a 1.344 WHIP.
Infielder Grae Kessinger (26) was Houston second round pick in 2019, and made his major league debut this season. He’s seven-for-36 with a solo home run.
RHP Enrique Coronel (23) has made 19 starts at the rookie level in the Dominican Republic, with 67 K’s in 52 2⁄3 innings. He has a 4.27 ERA and a 1.424 WHIP.
RHP Ethan Pecko (21) was Houston’s sixth-round choice this year, and has already earned a promotion to the Low-A Fayetteville Woodpeckers.
RHP Austin Hansen (27) was an eighth-round pick of Houston in 2018 out of Oklahoma. He’s pitched to a 6.21 ERA over 75 1⁄3 innings this season with the Triple-A Sugar Land Space Cowboys.
LHP Xavier Cedeño (37) appeared 52 times in relief for Houston from 2011 through 2013. He struck out 39 over 39 innings, with a 1.744 WHIP.
Infielder Brett Wallace (37) played 311 games for Houston from 2010 through 2013, and hit .242/.313/.391 with 29 jacks and 102 RBI.
RHP Geoff Geary (47) pitched in 71 games for Houston from 2008 and 2009. He was 3-6 with a 3.86 ERA and 57 whiffs in 84 innings.
3B Morgan Ensberg (48) played 673 games for Houston from 2000 through 2007. He hit .266/.367/.475 with 105 home runs and 335 RBI.
C Álex Treviño (66) appeared in 179 games for the Astros from 1988 through 1990. He slashed .252/.323/.364.
C George Bjorkman (67) caught 29 games for the 1983 Astros, hitting .227.
Although RHP Mike Maddux (62) is better known as a coach and Greg’s brother, he actually enjoyed a 15-season MLB career of his own. He was 2-2 with a 6.26 ERA over 27 1⁄3 innings for Houston in 2000.
RHP Nick Tropeano (33) made his major league debut with the 2014 Astros, pitching to a 1.292 WHIP over 21 2⁄3 innings.
Before he was a manager, Buddy Bell (72) had an 18-season MLB career, including a 74-game hitch with the Astros in 1988. He hit .253 with seven home runs and 37 RBI.
RHP Jim York (76) pitched in 114 games for Houston from 1972 through 1975, striking out 79 in 174 innings and putting up a 1.626 WHIP.
C Ed Hermann (1946-2013) caught in 151 games for the Astros from 1976 through 1978, hitting .227 with four jacks and 42 RBI.
Oakland Athletics (March 30 — August 24)
It finally happened. We’re down to 29 possible World Series winners, and Houston is still one of them. That’s still reason to celebrate, right?
Although I couldn’t find the official word anywhere, upon a few calculations I realized that Oakland can’t get into the playoffs. The final wildcard spot is currently held by the Mariners, and Seattle is the only team the A’s could mathematically catch. If Seattle loses all of their remaining games, and Oakland wins all of theirs, both teams would be 71-91. Since Seattle already has seven wins over the A’s, Oakland is the first team to be officially excluded from the prom.
Oakland’s 2023 campaign was really dead on arrival, with a seeming concession before Opening Day. Oakland’s organization has a total salary of $70.8 million, but their active adjusted payroll comes in at a whopping $30.7 million, which is less than 13 active single players for the year. That includes three New York Yankees, along with two Los Angeles Angels, two Texas Rangers, an Astro, a Cardinal, a National, a Met, a Twin and a Tiger.
Houston had 13 games against the A’s this year, and have gone 9-1 so far with three more games scheduled for September 11 through 13. ChatGPT had the following to say about Oakland’s season:
In Oakland, the team took the field,
But wins and success were concealed.
Their play was a mess,
Fans sighed in distress,
Oh, Athletics’ fate was sealed.