Tag Archives: houston astros

Today in Baseball: The Offseason Just Keeps on Trucking

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After a highly eventful Winter Meetings, this past weekend was relatively quiet in terms of MLB transactions. We basically just saw the finalization of moves made at the Meetings, like the Twins-Ervin Santana signing, the Wade Miley-to-the-Red Sox trade, and the Astros signing of two relievers- Luke Gregerson and Pat Neshek.

However, today, a few MLB transactions came to fruition:

For one, the Astros signed shortstop Jed Lowrie to a three-year deal. The deal guarantees $23 million, with another $5 million potentially added, which will be dependent on a 2018 team option. Lowrie developed in Boston, playing for the Red Sox from 2008 to 2011. After the 2011 season, he was traded to the Houston Astros in a deal that sent reliever Mark Melancon to the Red Sox. After playing just one season with the Astros, he was shipped to Oakland in exchange for a package centered around power-hitting DH/1B, Chris Carter. After playing two seasons in Oakland, Lowrie hit the free agent market. His return to Houston should be a substantial upgrade for the team, who was previously expected to play Marwin Gonzalez at short. Lowrie is a horrific baserunner, especially when you consider that he’s a shortstop, usually a position that warrants speed. However, he’s an above-average hitter, and has had some flashes of good power, and he’s quite a solid defender.

Lowrie was previously considered to be one of the many options to fill the Mets apparent void at shortstop, but now that he’s off of the market, the Mets will have to look elsewhere for such. Stephen Drew, Yoan Moncada, Jung-Ho Kang, and Brad Miller appear to be the most likely options as of today (if they don’t stick with Wilmer Flores).

The other notable move of the day was the Yankees re-signing of third baseman Chase Headley, who they’ll pay $52 million over 4 years. Headley, one of the top third basemen in the MLB today, was traded to the Yankees at last season’s trade deadline. He’s mainly known for his tremendous 2012 season, in which he won a Silver Slugger, Gold Glove, and led the NL in RBIs, but that’s not the only season in which he’s impressed. He was one of the Yankees top priorities this season, and their locking him up should be viewed as a positive move. This will likely send either Alex Rodriguez or the former Met, Chris Young, to the bench, while the other will play Designated Hitter.

Lastly, on the homefront, the Mets made two moves today, one of which resulted from the other. The Mets agreed to sign John Mayberry to a 1-year, $1.45 million contract on the last day of the Winter Meetings, last Thursday. The deal was finalized today. While not a tremendously “sexy” move, it shouldn’t go unnoticed… After signing Michael Cuddyer to play right-field, the Mets had three main priorities: signing a right-handed backup outfielder, acquiring a starting shortstop, and acquiring a left-handed relief pitcher. Through this signing, they’ve achieved one of those goals. The 30-year old outfielder hasn’t been very consistent over his six-year career, but he has displayed tremendous power at points. As a specialty backup player, Mayberry could be quite impactful. He’s a lefty-killer, an unbelievable pinch hitter, and someone whose power doesn’t apply to Citi Field, as we saw throughout his six seasons with the Philadelphia Phillies.

In order to clear up room for Mayberry on the 40-man roster, the Mets were forced to DFA Gonzalez Germen. Germen, who has constantly been called-up and sent-down by the Mets since 2013, is a 27 year old Dominican reliever. He is expected to either be sent to the Mets AAA affiliates, the Las Vegas 51s, or to hit the open market.

Today, we saw the Mets lose out on a shortstop candidate, see their crosstown rivals sign a nice player, add a solid bench piece, and DFA a fringe-MLB reliever. Now, they just need to get a shortstop…

Citi Recap: 9/27/14 vs. Houston Astros

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What was the weather like?

It was a beautiful night, very nice temperature.

What was the final score?

Mets lost 3-1 :(

Were there any notable stats/events?

-Curtis Granderson hit a deep home run in the fourth inning

-Matt den Dekker faced off against his first cousin, Kevin Chapman, in the 6th inning. MdD drew the walk.

-Lucas Duda made an excellent play at first, snagging a hot liner after a dive

What were the scoring plays?

Astros(Top 6) Robbie Grossman scores on a Jose Altuve single to right field. (Top 6) Jose Altuve scores on a Chris Carter double to left field, Anthony Recker applied tag, but dropped the ball. (Top 6) Chris Carter scores on a Matt Dominguez single to right field.

-Mets: (Bottom 4) Curtis Granderson homers on a deep line drive to right field.

How was the atmosphere?

Very loud, but not quite a packed house. Lower level was filled to capacity, but the upper two levels were nearly empty.

What did you eat?

As usual, I ate at the Pat LaFrieda’s Chop House in the Delta Club. That sandwich is REALLY good…

Did you get any autographs?

Yep! As soon as I walked into the stadium, I saw George Springer signing, so I got his autograph. A few minutes later, I got Jose Altuve, which was awesome! John Franco, the Mets legendary reliever, was on the field talking to the Astros manager, so my friend and I called him over, and he signed a baseball for each of us. Later on, we see him talking to someone and we realize that it is EDDIE MURRAY! That’s right, the same Eddie Murray who is in the Hall of Fame, and is one of the best players in baseball history. After waiting around for several minutes, as he was talking to Franco and another man, he turned around and signed for us! It was awesome! Still have no idea why he was there, but still awesome. A few minutes later, as we were about to leave to get something to eat, Chris Carter walks over to sign. For those who don’t know Carter, because this is his first season as a really good player, he has 37 home runs, good enough for 2nd best in the entire MLB. It goes down in my book as probably the best autograph-seeking Mets game thus far…

Any celebrities in attendance?

-John Franco was there. Brooklyn-born Mets legend. Played for the team from 1990-2004. Team captain from 01-04. 2x Rolaids Reliever of the Year. 4x All Star. Led the MLB in saves three times. Mets Hall of Famer. Overall one of the premier relievers in league history.

-Eddie Murray was there. 504 HR, 3,255 hits, 1,917 RBI, .287 batting average. 1977 ROY. 1983 WS Champ. 8x All Star. 3x Gold Glover. 3x Silver Slugger. First Ballot Hall of Famer in 2003.

-There were two guys from some TV show that were there, but I couldn’t quite catch their names or the name of the show.

 

Overall, it was a fun night, but a sucky game to watch- particularly as a Mets fan. Nerve-racking moment in the 6th, when Jon Niese left the game with an elevated heart beat- hoping that he’s okay. That was my last Mets game of the season, so I just have to wait for next season…