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Monday, February.11, 2013
By Nicholas Rossoletti (MLB Reports Trade Correspondent): Follow @NRoss56
In 2005, the Houston Astros completed a run to the World Series. It was the culmination of the Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell teams in Houston. That team had players on it named Clemens, Pettitte, Oswalt,Bagwell and Biggio. This Houston team is a far way from that National League Champion. Houston has failed at epic levels the last two seasons. The state of the current union of this team is summed up in one word: bad. With that said, there is a ray of hope in these dark days.
When I first learned of this assignment, I planned on doing a portion of a piece on the Astros most expensive and possibly most prominent offensive piece, Jed Lowrie. Houston, in an effort to aggressively proceed with rebuilding its roster, traded Lowrie for several pieces. The trade itself has been covered by this site and our Astros’ corespondent already so I’m going to focus on piece of it. Chris Carter, the First Baseman/Outfielder, acquired by the Astros. Carter has shown consistent power at the Minor League levels as he consistently posted well above league average ISO numbers. His brief stint in the Majors with the A’s prior to the 2012 season did not see those numbers translate. Finally in 2012, we got a look at what we hope is the real Chris Carter.
Carter posted 16 Home Runs in less than 300 Plate Appearances while posting a spectacular ISO. Carter is not the type of player who will hit for average as his Strike-Out rates are consistently well above league average, but he does so an excellent propensity for taking walks. Carter is an Adam Dunn - type player. Big power, good On Base Percentage, but a high Strike Out rate with a low Batting Average. Overall, I think he will make a fine number four hitter, but the pieces around him need to fit. The other issue is where does Carter play. He is traditionally a First Baseman, but Houston is currently playing 26-Year Old Brett Wallace at first in an effort to determine his value. More important than Wallace though is one of Houston’s top prospects, First Baseman Jonathan Singleton.
Bagwell and Biggio Mix of Highlights: Who will be the next tandem of Astros greats?:
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Thursday, December.27, 2012
Chuck Booth (Yankees Correspondent/Website Owner): Follow @chuckbooth3024
As of this very moment, you are not the happiest of campers if you are a Yankees fan. Francisco Cervelli, Chris Stewart and Austin Romine look to start the year out catching for the Bronx Bombers! Really??? You are telling me that you will spend 215-225 Million Dollars on (Luxury Taxable) Payroll and you couldn’t find a mere 7.5 Million for a 1 Year Deal to sign A.J. Pierzynski? The club will receive some insurance money for A-Rod’s injury this year, however the Luxury Tax is not affected by that. So maybe knowing that they will pay 40% more for a guys salary (more than he really makes as a salary) is another thing stalling the franchise from plunking some serious cash down on a real quality veteran catcher. In my opinion, this is a brutal mistake that will leave the fans frustrated beyond belief if it blows up in the Yankees face. The good news is that if the team is playing well in every other department other than the Catchers position, they can always address the situation at any point next year by a trade. With no significant catchers left on the FA Market, New York will probably go this route. If you can manage to keep atop of the standings, then you may land a veteran catcher that will only have a pro-rated salary for the rest of the year.
If I were Ichiro Suzuki, Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera or Andy Pettitte, I would not be happy with the club not landing a proven offensive or defensive catcher. (Boy does that Jesus Montero Trade not look so favorable right now.) These 4 veterans are in the last year or two of their contracts and possibly their careers will end once their contracts. While these guys would never panic, you only need to look what the Blue Jays are doing north of the border for real ‘transaction aggression.’ I just think that you have re-signed and brought in Free Agents that all point to a “Win Now” mentality, yet you are going towards one-dimensional catchers that all have limited experience. It doesn’t feel right and the Yankees ‘Faithful’ will have a field day on Management and ownership should this position end up being a crutch on the teams success chances for 2013.