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Astros Crawfish Boil: January 12, 2024

The weekend boil.

Brian McCann & Roberto Osuna
| Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images

Houston Astros News

Astros Avoid Arbitration, Shell Out New Deals (Yardbarker) Mauricio Dubon’s the only one going to arbitration.

Jordan Hicks free agency update: Astros, Yankees in the mix for ex-Jays reliever, per MLB insider (Sportskeeda)

Astros 2024: The best of times – The worst of times (Chipalatta)

AL West News

A’s — A’s farm team steps up to sponsor fans’ festival as MLB team bugs out again (SF Chronicle)

M’s — Mariners strike deals with Ty France, Logan Gilbert and 5 others to avoid salary arbitration (goSkagit)

Halos — Angels miss out once again, as Marcus Stroman inks affordable deal with the Yankees (Halo Hangout)

Mall Cops — Texas Rangers agree to deal with catcher Andrew Knizner (Dallas Morning News)

MLB News

Stroman back at home as righty reaches deal with Yanks

Cubs get No. 44 overall prospect Busch, RHP Almonte from LA

Interest building in Votto?

Alonso, Mets agree to deal worth $20.5M, avoid arbitration

Soto agrees to record-setting $31M deal to avoid arbitration with Yanks

Houston Astros Birthdays


RF/1B Mike Simms (57)

IF Casey Candaele (63)

SS Waner Luciano (19)

Everystros LXX

196. Doug Jones (Bagwell score 25.75) was a six-foot-three right-handed pitcher from Tucson, AZ. Born on June 24, 1957, he was a third-round choice of the Milwaukee Brewers in 1978 out of Central Arizona College. Jones was one of six players from the round to get to the majors, but the only one with a career-bWAR over 10 (Jones finished with 21.4).

Jones appeared with the Brewers (0-0, 10.13, 2 23 IP, one K) and the Cleveland Indians (26-32, 128 saves, 3.04, 421 IP, 339 K, three All-Star appearances). On January 24, 1992, Jones signed with the Astros through free agency.

In 1992, Jones pitched in 80 games for Houston, and was one of three relievers to pitch 111 innings for the Astros that season. He gave up 29 runs (23 earned) on 96 hits and 17 walks. He struck out 93 and went 11-8 with 36 saves, a 1.85 ERA, a 1.012 WHIP, and a .235/.274/.320 opposing slashline. He pitched with a 1.96 aLI and stranded 26-of-37 inherited runners.

On April 9, Jones struck out six over three shutout innings in a 13-inning 6-5 walkoff victory over the Cincinnati Reds. For his first-half efforts, he was named to his fourth All-Star Team. On July 27, he earned a win with three shutout innings, striking out four in a 5-1, 11-inning win against the Atlanta Braves.

On August 18, he saved his 27th game of the season by stranding one of his two inherited runners and keeping the Cardinals otherwise scoreless over two innings in a 7-6 win against St. Louis. On September 19, Jones struck out two over three shutout innings, in a 12-inning 3-2 victory against the Braves. On September 26, he earned another six-out save in a 5-4 triumph against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

In 1993, Jones gave up 46 runs (43 earned) on 21 walks and 102 hits in 85 13 innings. He struck out 66 and finished the year with a 4-10 record, 26 saves, a 4.54 ERA, a 1.441 WHIP, and a .298/.344/.392 opposing slashline. He pitched with a 1.59 aLI and stranded 11-of-20 inherited baserunners. On August 7, Jones inherited two runners and stranded both of them, then struck out two over 1 23 innings for his 19th save in a 6-5 win against the San Francisco Giants.

On December 2, 1993, the Astros sent Jones with Jeff Juden to the Philadelphia Phillies for Mitch Williams. Jones spent one season with the Phils (2-4, 27 saves, 2.17, 54 IP, 38 K), later playing with the Baltimore Orioles (0-4, 22 saves, 5.01, 46 23 IP, 42 K), the Chicago Cubs (2-2, two saves, 5.01, 32 13 IP, 26 K), a second tour with the Brewers (14-10, 49 saves, 3.31, 166 IP, 159 K), another tour with the Indians (1-2, one save, 3.45, 31 13 IP, 28 K), and the Oakland Athletics (9-7, 12 saves, 177 13 IP, 117 K).

After his retirement, Jones served as a minor league special assistant with the Arizona Diamondbacks for three seasons before signing on as the pitching coach for San Diego Christian College for five years. He then was a minor league pitching coach for four seasons in Colorado’s minor league system. In 2021, he passed away due to complications from contracting COVID. SABR Bio

195. Jay Powell (Bagwell score 27.31) is a six-foot-four right-handed pitcher from Meridian, MS. Born on January 9, 1972, he was an 11th-round selection of the San Diego Padres in 1990 out of West Lauderdale, HS. After not signing and three years of college, Powell was taken in the first round of the 1993 draft by Mississippi State University, 19th overall by the Baltimore Orioles. The draft round featured 28 eventual major leaguers, led by Alex Rodriguez (117.5 bWAR) and Torii Hunter (50.7 bWAR). On December 6, 1994, the O’s traded Powell to the Florida Marlins for Bret Barberie.

Powell played in four seasons for the Marlins (15-9, seven saves, 3.82, 195 23 IP, 145 K). On July 4, 1998, the Marlins sent Powell with Scott Makarewicz to the Astros for Ramón Castro.

After reporting to Houston, Powell pitched in 29 games in relief for the Astros. He allowed nine runs, all earned, on 15 walks and 38 strikeouts, with a 2.38 ERA, a 3-3 record, four saves, a 1.088 WHIP, and a .182/.277/.265. He pitched with a 1.81 aLI, and stranded 18-of-24 inherited runners.

On July 19, Powell stranded both of his inherited runners then pitched 2 13 scoreless innings in a 12-inning, 4-3 win over the San Francisco Giants. On September 14, he entered with one out and the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth, in a 4-4 tie with the Mets. He then worked a scoreless 10th in an eventual 13-inning, 7-4 loss to New York.

In 1999, Powell pitched in 67 games in relief his first full season in Houston, going 5-4 with four saves, a 4.32 ERA, and a 1.627 WHIP. He gave up 38 runs (36 earned) with 40 walks, 77 strikeouts, and a .282/.372/.378 opposing slashline. He pitched with a 1.22 aLI and stranded 19-of-30 inherited baserunners.

In 2000, Powell was limited to 29 appearances out of the pen for the Astros. He gave up 18 runs (17 earned) on 29 hits and 19 walks. He struck out 16 and was 1-1 with a 5.67 ERA, a 1.778 WHIP, and a .271/.381/.346 opposing line. Used as less of a high-leverage pitcher, he worked with an aLI of 0.96 and stranded seven-of-10 inherited runners.

Powell went 2-2 for Houston in 2001, and gave up 18 runs (15 earned) in 36 13 innings for a 3.72 ERA. He walked 19 and struck out 28, allowing 41 hits, a 1.651 WHIP, and a .275/.355/.409 line. He pitched with a 1.10 aLI and allowed 12-of-22 inherited runners to score.

On June 27, 2001, the Astros traded Powell to the Colorado Rockies for Ron Villone. Powell finished the season with the Rockies (3-1, 2.79, 38 23 IP, 26 K), then played with the Texas Rangers (7-3, 5.37, 131 13 IP, 92 K) and the Atlanta Braves (0-0, 0.00, 3 13 IP, one K).

194. Robbie Grossman (Bagwell score 27.81) is a six-foot switch-hitting outfielder from San Diego, CA. Born on September 16, 1989, he was a sixth-round choice of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2008 out of Cy-Fair High School. On July 24, 2012, the Pirates traded Grossman with Colton Cain and Rudy Owens to the Astros for Wandy Rodríguez.

Grossman reached the majors with Houston in 2013, appearing in 63 games, starting 37 games in left (340 13 innings, .971), 25 games in center (210 13 innings, .982), and zero times in right (five innings, 1.000). He went 69-for-257 with 14 doubles and four home runs, with six stolen bases in 13 attempts. He slashed .268/.332/.370 with 23 walks, 70 strikeouts, 29 runs scored and 21 driven in. On August 7, he hit a game-tying third-inning two-run homer against the Red Sox, then doubled and scored the go-ahead run in the sixth inning of an eventual 7-5 loss to Boston.

In 2014, Grossman slashed .233/.337/.333 in 103 appearances for Houston, starting 64 games in left (558 13 innings, .983), 30 games in right (266 23 innings, .984), and four times in center (40 innings, 1.000). He was 84-for-360 as a hitter, with 14 doubles, two triples, six homers, and nine stolen bases in 12 attempts. He drew 55 walks and struck out 105 times, with 42 runs and 37 RBI. He had 19 multiple hit games, including six where he collected three or more.

On April 12, Grossman hit a three-run go-ahead fourth-inning homer, then doubled in the ninth inning of a 6-5 win over the Texas Rangers. On July 9, he doubled in the first, hit a third-inning RBI-single, a fifth-inning game-tying home run, then singled and scored again in the seventh inning of an 8-4 win over Texas. On August 8, he doubled in the fourth, singled in the sixth, and hit a come-from-behind, go-ahead eighth-inning home run in a 4-3 win against the Rangers.

Grossman spent a lot of the 2015 season for Houston with their minor league system, but did appear in 24 games at the major league level as well. He went seven-for-49 with two doubles and a home run, slashing .143/.222/.245 with five walks, 17 strikeouts, seven runs, and five RBI. Defensively, he started 14 times in left field (120 innings) and zero times in right (seven innings) without an error. On November 19, the Astros released him.

Grossman signed with the Minnesota Twins (347 games, .266/.371/.400, 25 home runs, 130 RBI), and later also played with the Oakland Athletics (189 games, .241/.337/.386, 14 home runs, 61 RBI), the Detroit Tigers (239 games, .228/.343/.371, 25 home runs, 90 RBI), the Atlanta Braves (46 games, .217/.306/.370, five home runs, 22 RBI), and the Rangers (115 games, .238/.340/.394, 10 home runs, 49 RBI). Currently a free agent, it’s likely that Grossman catches on somewhere for the 2024 campaign.

193. Brian McCann (Bagwell score 34.55) is a six-foot-three left-handed batting catcher from Athens, GA. Born on February 20, 1984, he was second-round choice of the Atlanta Braves in 2002 out of Duluth High School.

McCann played the first nine seasons of his major league career with the Braves (1,105 games, .277/.350/.474, 176 home runs, 661 RBI), then joined the New Yankees for three seasons (405 games, .235/.313/.418, 69 home runs, 227 RBI). On November 17, 2016, the Bombers traded McCann to the Astros for Albert Abreu and Jorge Guzmán.

McCann hit .241/.323/.436 in 97 games for the 2017 Astros, starting 94 games behind the plate and fielding at .995 in 827 13 innings. He also threw out only eight-of-62 runners trying to steal, a 13 percent CS-rate that translates roughly to a 48 CS+. As a hitter, he was 84-for-349 with 12 doubles, one triple, 18 home runs, and one stolen base in one attempt. He drew 38 walks, struck out 58 times, scored 47 runs, and collected 62 RBI.

McCann had 19 multi-hit games through the season, including one three-hit game and one four-hit game. On May 16, he singled in the first inning against the Marlins, then added a three-run second-inning double to essentially put the game out of reach in an eventual 12-2 win over Miami. On August 27, he hit a fourth-inning RBI-single, then added a three-run go-ahead eighth-inning triple in a 7-5 victory against the Los Angeles Angels.

On Houston’s charge to their first World Series Championship, McCann played in 17 games and went 10-for-57 with one homer and seven RBI.

In 2018, McCann played in 63 games and went 40-for-189 with three doubles, seven home runs, and zero stolen bases in one attempt, slashing .212/.301/.339 with 19 walks, 40 strikeouts, 22 runs and 23 RBI. He fielded at .995 behind the plate, making three errors in 487 innings while throwing out nine-of-28 baserunners for a 114 CS+. On April 17, McCann hit a sixth-inning go-ahead two-run homer of the Mariners in a 4-1 win over Seattle. After the season, McCann was granted free agency.

McCann signed on to finish up his playing career with the 2019 Braves (85 games, .249/.323/.412, 12 home runs, 45 RBI).

192. Dexter Fowler (Bagwell score 42.07) is a six-foot-five switch-hitting centerfielder from Atlanta, GA. Born on March 22, 1986, he was a 14th-round choice of the Colorado Rockies in 2004 out of Milton High School.

Fowler reached the bigs with the Rockies in 2008 and spent six seasons with them at the top level (667 games, .270/.365/.423, 40 home runs, 210 RBI). On December 3, 2013, the Rockies sent Fowler to the Astros for Brandon Barnes and Jordan Lyles.

In 2014, Fowler appeared in 114 games for Houston, starting 110 times in center field (959 innings, .980). As a hitter, he went 120-for-434 with 21 doubles, four triples, eight home runs, and 20 stolen bases in 27 attempts. He slashed .276/.375/.399 and drew 66 walks with 108 strikeouts, 61 runs, and 35 RBI.

Fowler picked up 34 multiple-hit games in his only Astros-season, with five three-hit affairs. On September 7, he hit a single in the fourth, lay down a sacrifice bunt in the eighth, and drew a bases-loaded walk for a go-ahead two-out ninth-inning RBI against the Athletics, in a 4-3 victory over Oakland.

Fowler left when the Astros traded him to the Chicago Cubs for Dan Straily and Luis Valbuena. He played two seasons for the Cubs (281 games, .261/.367/.427, 30 home runs, 94 RBI, 2016 NL All-Star), four with the St. Louis Cardinals (389 games, .233/.334/.408, 49 home runs, 177 RBI), and a swan song with the 2021 Los Angeles Angels (seven games, five-for-20, one RBI).

191. Sean Bergman (Bagwell score 17.83) is a six-foot-four right-handed pitcher from Joliet, IL. Born on April 11, 1970, he was a fourth-round choice of the Detroit Tigers in 1991 out of Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.

Bergman reached the majors in 1993 for the Tigers, and played three seasons with the club (10-15, 5.28, 192 23 IP, 117 K). He then played two seasons with the San Diego Padres (8-12, 5.17, 212 13 IP, 159 K). On January 14, 1998, the Padres sent Bergman to the Astros for James Mouton.

In 1998, Bergman entered Houston’s rotation for 27 turns, also making four appearances out of the bullpen. He was 12-9 with a 3.72 ERA, a 1.308 WHIP, and a .268/.315/.424 opposing slashline. He allowed 81 runs (71 earned) on 42 walks and 183 hits and 100 strikeouts.

On May 12, Bergman held the Marlins to two hits over 6 23 shutout innings, striking out three in a 4-2 win against Florida. On July 28, he held the Marlins to two runs on seven hits over eight frames in a 7-3 Houston victory. On August 16, he struck out a season-high nine Cubs over eight innings, giving up a run on four hits in a 2-1 hard-luck loss to Chicago. On September 13, he struck out seven in 7 23 innings, giving up three runs on five hits in a 3-2 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals.

In 1999, Bergman started his season with Houston, and went 4-6 in 19 games, including 16 starts. He allowed 60 runs, 59 earned, on 130 hits and 26 walks in 99 innings, striking out 38. He had a 5.36 ERA, a 1.576 WHIP, and a .325/.370/.455 opposing line. On June 1, he he held the Brewers to six hits and no runs over a seven-inning shutout, in a 3-0 win over Milwaukee. On June 11, he struck out five batters over seven three-hit innings, allowing one run ina 2-1 win against the San Diego Padres.

190. Trever Miller (Bagwell score 25.11) is a six-foot-three left-handed pitcher from Louisville, KY. Born on May 29, 1973, he was a first-round choice of the Detroit Tigers in 1991 out of Trinity High School, with the 41st overall selection. He reached the majors with the Tigers in 1996 (0-4, 9.18, 16 23 IP, eight K).

On December 10, in a nine-player deal, Miller joined the Astros. He worked out of Houston’s bullpen 37 times through his first major league season, 1998. He gave up 21 runs (18 earned) on 57 hits and 20 walk, striking out 30 times in 53 13 innings. He was 2-0 with one save, a 3.04 ERA, a 1.444 WHIP, and a .266/.332/.397 opposing slashline.

Miller was used as a lower-leveraged reliever in his rookie season, coming in with a 0.60 aLI. He allowed only four-of-22 inherited runners to eventually cross the plate. He also collected the only base-hit of his career, a double in three plate appearances. He also scored a run in that same contest, a 15-0 win over the Montreal Expos on April 26.

In 1999, Miller pitched 47 times out of the pen, going 3-2 with one save, a 5.07 ERA, a 1.752 WHIP, and a .299/.400/.464 opposing slashline. He allowed 29 runs (28 earned) on 58 hits and 29 walks over 49 23 innings, striking out 37. On June 5, he came in with two runners on, a one-run lead, and nobody out in the eighth inning, and retired the side without surrendering a run in a 6-5 win against the Minnesota Twins. On August 20, he pitched the 13th through the 15th, striking out four and giving up zero runs in an eventual 16-inning 6-4 win over the Florida Marlins.

On March 29, 2000, the Astros traded Miller to the Philadelphia Phillies for Yorkis Pérez. After his time with the Phillies (0-0, 8.36, 14 innings, 10 K), he also played with the Los Angeles Dodgers (0-0, 23.14, 2 13 IP, one K), the Toronto Blue Jays (2-2, 4.61, 52 23 IP, 44 K) and the Tampa Bay Devil Rays (3-3, 3.57, 93 13 IP, 78 K). On January 10, 2006, Miller resigned with the Astros.

In 2006, Miller pitched in 70 games for the Astros, going 2-3 with one save and a 3.02 ERA, a 1.086 WHIP, and a .225/.286/.385 opposing slashline. He allowed 17 runs, all earned, on 42 hits and 13 walks. He struck out 56 in 50 23 innings, with a 0.85 aLI and 33-of-40 inherited runners stranded. On May 27, Miller struck out a pair over three shutout innings from the 12th through the 14th in an eventual 18-inning, 8-7 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Miller pitched in 76 games in 2007, all out of the bullpen for Houston. He was 0-0 with one save and 46 strikeouts in 46 13 innings. Opponents slashed .249/.346/.431 while being held to a 4.86 ERA and a 1.468 WHIP. On July 7, he inherited runners on the corners and one out in a tie game in the 12th inning against the Mets in an eventual 5-3 win over New York.

Miller left following the 2007 season and spent a second tour with the Rays (2-0, two saves, 4.15, 43 13 IP, 44 K), later pitching for the St. Louis Cardinals (4-3, one save, 3.12, 95 13 IP, 77 K), a second run with the Jays (0-0, 4.91, 3 23 IP, two K), and the Boston Red Sox (0-0, 0.00, two IP, one K).

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