Bagwell in the house.

It’s always good to see Jeff Bagwell, and it’ll be fun to him around for the next week or so. The retired first baseman, now one of general manager Ed Wade’s 27 special assistants [OK, that’s a slight exaggeration] will float between the Minor League and Major League complexes and he plans to be in uniform for the Astros’ Grapefruit League opener at Osceola County Stadium on Wednesday.

“I’ll probably see some of the Minor League kids and go straight over there on Thursday,” Bagwell said. “I’ll be at the game tomorrow, walking around. It really depends on what Matty tells me I’m going to do.”

That would be Matt Galante, who is — you guessed it — a special assistant to Ed Wade.


I don’t know about you, but talking to Darin Erstad about blowing his nose is making me sort of uncomfortable. Not nearly as uncomfortable, however, as I was talking to Kaz Matsui about his Spring Training problem this time last year. Still, having to ask Erstad what he’s going to do the next couple of weeks when he has to blow his nose, but can’t, was both humorous and nauseating.

Incidentally, Erstad does have a backup plan. I’ll let you use your imagination on that one.


The mood in camp today was a little more upbeat than normal. Brandon Backe is starting to get the color back in his face, which was good to see. Doug Brocail was his typically chatty self, and seems to be working through his tendinitis issues.

Lance Berkman told me he asked Ed Wade [jokingly] for a two-year, $20 million extension. Wade joked back that the only extra money they’re spending on him is for his retirement party.


I’m hearing Miguel Tejada may not play in the World Baseball Classic after all. Playing time may be an issue, and the Dominican Repulic team may be considering asking Tejada to play out of position. We’ll find out soon enough because final rosters are being announced tonight on MLB Network, but it sounds like he’s reconsidering his decision to play.


I’m still in the process of trying to figure out how this blog thing works, and as you probably have noticed, I haven’t quite gotten the hang of the picture posting part. But I really can’t let my shot of Tim Kurkjian in yesterday’s blog be the only picture I post. So here’s a shot of Berkman, pretending to be mad that I’m taking his picture. He does this often. Instead of ignoring the photographers like all of the other players, Lance can’t help himself. Here, he is saying “Would you please put that dang camera away?” Strong words from the Puma.

Thumbnail image for 0224_berkman.jpg


Baggy in uniform? How cool is that? You HAVE to get a photo of that for your blog Alyson.
Too bad we won’t be there for ST until March 18th. It would be awesome to see Bagwell in uniform again.

I think it’s good news for the Astros that Tejada may not play with the DR. We need all his energy at SS and hitting if we stand any kind of chance in 2009. Besides, I was afraid we might miss him play the week we’re there.As for your blogging skills, I like the short multiple quips and observational format..Keep up the good work!

It’s awesome to see Bagwell in uniform! I must have taken 100 pictures of him last spring, especially when he was at the practice field working with the minor league players. I think last year he came and went a couple of times over the duration of Spring Training. Any idea about his plans for this year?

Maybe you could use a special marker like –DISGUSTING NOTE WARNING– to tip off the reader when you’re about to give details about the contents of Erstad’s nose?

Yeah, Alyson, I can’t imagine it’s any worse than Kaz’s… er… “fissures.” But still, yuck. Thanks for another nice blog. Do you intend to keep the blog up even after you get back from Spring Training?

Oh come on, surely you miss covering the A-Fizz issues?!?! I think Sac was secretly posing for you in the back of that picture as well!!! Happy Spring Training…Here’s to another potentially frustrating season w/the hope we still have something to be excited about in October :)!!!

Thanks for the comments, folks…Roundrock15: yep, the blogs are here to stay, so they should continue through the regular season and beyond. Also, feel free to add me as a friend on facebook; I’ll be posting some photo galleries from Spring Training on there, as soon as I can find a spot in Florida with a strong enough signal to stay on the internet for any significant amount of time …
Susan: I’ve decided to stop “picking” on Erstad about his nose if you know what I mean…today, I opted for the much simpler, “Hello, Darin, how are you today?” He’s doing fine.

I just discovered your blog?I?m so slow sometimes..
Anyway, it?s good to have insights on the Astros.
Quick question: When is typically the first wave of ?cuts? during spring training?
Thanks Ms.Footer

Renaudtn, the first round of cuts usually comes soon after the first week of games, but since everything started earlier this year and Spring Training is longer, we might not see cuts made so soon. But I would imagine by March 7 or so they might send some guys out, especially the young starting pitchers who need to pitch regularly in order to get ready for their seasons.

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