H-Town Sports

Houston Sports Blog - Real sports cities have TWO Conference USA teams

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Last Night on the Farm

AAA: Yeah, Jason Hirsh needs a little more seasoning in AAA, I'd say. Wandy Rodriguez is definitely a better option for the Astros' rotation right now. But for Jason's friends and family, who apparently are the only people paying attention to his performance, let me just briefly mention his start last night: 6 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 7 K. The win moved his record on the season to 10-2, and his ERA now stands at a paltry 2.28. He has won nine consecutive decisions, with his last loss coming on April 27, and he has not given up an earned run in twenty-seven innings. Even if the Astros were ten games ahead of their nearest pursuer in the NL Central, Jason Hirsh should be in the rotation NOW. My philosophy is that the major league roster should contain the best 10-12 pitchers in your organization, and there is no way in hell that anyone can convince me that Hirsh is not one of those 10-12 guys.

Also, Mike Rodriguez had two more hits, and Hector Gimenez hit his fifth HR of the season. Charlton Jimerson struck out twice and has now struck out an amazing 124 times in 320 at-bats. But he does have 14 walks.

AA: The Hooks had to think that they were hallucinating when they looked up at the scoreboard at Whataburger Field during the seventh inning stretch and saw that they were losing 3-0. Rarely has that been the case as of late. So it was not so surprising, I imagine, to the 6,497 fans in attendance when the Hooks rallied for four late runs to defeat Frisco 4-3. DH Josh Bonifay put the Hooks ahead to stay with his 13th home run in the eighth inning. Per Greg Rajan's notebook, SP Juan Gutierrez has been placed on the DL with "a tired arm" and is expected to miss a couple of turns in the rotation. Greg also has a feature on OF Jorge Cortes, who extended is consecutive games on-base streak to 53 on Wednesday night. Also noted in this feature is the fact that all five members of the Hooks' regular starting rotation are ranked in the top-11 in the Texas League in ERA.

High-A: Salem was rained out (again).

Low-A: The Legends snapped their six-game losing streak 3-1 against Kannapolis behind the strong arm of Tom Fairchild, who pitched another great seven inning stint to lower his ERA to 1.66 and raise his record to 10-3. Koby Clemens had the big knock with a two-run double. After the game, 1B Ole Sheldon became the first Legend to be promoted in 2006, and he will be replaced everyday at 1B by Mark Ori. Fairchild may be the next Legend to get the call, as he has won ten consecutive decisions and leads the SAL in wins, ERA and innings pitched.

Short Season A: I had begun to wonder where all of the Astros' 2006 draft picks were playing since I could not find them online. Then I started thinking that I thought I remembered Brian Bogusevic playing in New Jersey last season in short-season A. Turns out I was right, and I've been posting incorrect information so far this season (the Tri-City Dust Devils rather than the Tri-City Valley Cats). I'm stunned that our readers have not pointed out this egregious error. The Valley Cats, who are the Astros' Class A Short Season affiliate, lost 9-2 to Oneonta last night. 1B Eric Taylor, the Astros' 30th round draft pick in 2006, is now hitting .388 on the season.

Rookie: Greenville lost 1-0 to Princeton in extra innings. CF Orlando Rosales, the Astros 19th round draft pick in 2006, had three of the Astros five hits.


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