Hanging out at Cafe Central in Vienna, where exiled Lenin and Trotsky used to play chess.
Andy - Of course you're right on about having your high on-base guys at the top of the lineup. And Ausmus is crap. But, in the long run, it's not that important. I am kinda worried that Jimy will bat Everett 2nd, which would mean 2 of the 4 worst hitters in our lineup (outside of Ausmus and P) will get the most at-bats. This also probably means we will run more, when we really shouldn't be risking any outs with Bagwell, Kent, Berkman, Hidalgo, Ensberg coming up. So...bat Everett lower.
And remember, Spring Training doesn't mean a thing....but it's still nice to win 14-2.
I think the Astros are pretty much set...Veres has done well this spring and Saarloos has not, so the bullpen might look like Dotel Lidge Duckworth Stone Veres Miceli Gallo, with Saarloos Hernandez and Robertson all at AAA. But who knows? The one thing I still fear is an injury to either Ensberg or Kent, which would result in Viz getting way too many ABs. Other than that, I think we are ready to roll.
Andy, I saw Requiem for a Dream the other day. Powerful stuff, even though the tape was so scratchy at the end I couldn't hear anything. Oh, and have you read 'Howl', a poem by Allan Ginsberg? Check it out.
Barstool, Mark - Did you guys play each other in the 1st round yet? Barstool, did Mark make you switch to the 6.1? Is it working?
JT - Poker updates? Playing any tennis?
Oh, and Baseball Prospectus has a free article up at their site about the Astros (it is a PTP article...you'll see it.) They talk about the bullpen, mostly, predicting a decline...their forecasting system is almost always cautious, though.
Finally, I just want to nominate the Billy Wagner-to-the-Phillies trade as one of the best moves of the offseason. We traded 80 incredible innings for 3 good pitching prospects, and saved money which allowed us to sign 350-400 above-average innings in Pettitte and Clemens. Well done, Mr. Hunsicker.
Best moves of the 2004 offseason
1. Mike Cameron to the Mets.
2. Vladi to the Angels.
3. ARod to the Yankees.
4. Billy Wagner trade.
5. Kazuo Matsui to the Mets.
6. Roger Clemens signing.