And so it continues.

Cecil Cooper was typically quiet after the Astros’ loss to the Braves on Tuesday. He’s running out of things to say, and who can blame him? The Astros have lost 10 in a row, and as Cooper pointed out, you couldn’t even blame this last one on the “kids.”

The lineup looked largely like the one projected for Opening day: Matsui, Bourn, Berkman, Lee, Pence, Boone…with one of the projected starting pitchers, Brian Moehler, on the mound. And still, the Astros just weren’t very good.

“This was veterans today,” Cooper said. “We didn’t hit, and we didn’t execute our pitches. I don’t have any answers about why this is happening, unless someone put the hex on us.”

Cooper concluded with, “this is bordering on ridiculous.”

The Astros are now 1-10-1 and haven’t won since the first game of the spring season. Ridiculous indeed. They’ll try again in Sarasota Wednesday, and guess what? Berkman, seen here balancing a bat on his nose, is finally making a road trip. I sense the tide turning already.

0310_blog_berkman_bat.jpg

17 Comments

I don’t know what else to say, either. Some of the youngsters in camp have looked good, but most of the vets need to start picking it up, sooner than later.
http://ledzeb99.mlblogs.com

I’m with everyone else. There’s just not a lot to say right now.

http://houston.mlblogs.com

“Unless someone put the hex on us” Coop your a business man and the business is baseball. You probably should have kept that comment to yourself. How about saying we stink and everybody on our team, our coaches and myself are responsible. It’s unacceptable and we need to turn thi thing around. TAKE THE BLAME AND SHARE AMONG EVERYONE.

The guys either want to get serious, and win….or not.
No one can “love” them into winning, anymore than
anyone can put a “hex” on them not to. These are grown men, making a TON of money to play a “game”. Now….it’s
time to quit making excuses and get with the program………
or shut up and go home.
Thanks.

Hey Alyson,
If Andruw Jones continues to look like he’s turning his career around but does not make the Ranger’s crowded outfield, do you see the Astros showing any interest in him?

As my brother the urologist says, “This too shall pass… like a kidney stone.” For those of you who don’t like the outcome of today’s game, I wrote an alternate version of it in my Astros Fan in Exile blog. (Google, you’ll find it.) Please feel free to add comments with embellishments of your own – the more ridiculous the better. Fantasy is good therapy for all of us. :-) And as Scarlett O’Hara (sort of) said, “Tomorrow is another game.”

Well?if y?all can?t stand the Astros getting pounded in ST maybe you should consider watching the WBC?the Neds vs. DR yesterday was simply awesome! Tejada is coming back to ST to reclaim his SS spot ;)

Renaudtn I agree maybe if they watch something inspirational like the Netherlands team it will rub off.

Since no one is being optimistic right now, and its hard to I agree, I will try.

Remember its all about the individual performances, and although we haven’t won, lets not forget we aren’t losing ground in the race for the division. Better some of these people fail now and we promote the right people. Maybe the best thing to come out of this is someone gets a chance that never would have had we not lost a billion straight games.

I’m actually grateful for the WBC. It’s been a nice distraction from the Astros unsettling spring performance.

Seems from what I’ve read, most of the roster spots are going to the players who had them last year. One spot in the starting rotation, and one on the bench is all that is up for grabs.

I hope the vets dont cost Cecil his job like they did P Garner.Also why dont the Astros have any interest in Puge he is probably getting a little scared and I bet his price is dropping fast.

URGENT MESSAGE TO DRAYTON McLANE!

Ed Wade has never been a winner! He had 8 long years in Philadelphia and couldn’t win. Do we need to watch him “not win” here for another 6 and 1/2 years before we fire him, also? Also, speaking of failure, which players has Ricky Bennett successfully developed? This guy is a joke……Director of Player Development……..really? He has no clue! Did you know he never played in the Major Leagues? Where do we find these guys? The Houston Astros will not be a competitive team again until Ed Wade, Ricky Bennett and Sean Berry are working for a bank somewhere! Maybe Citicorp? Are they still in business? They won’t be after these 3 guys start working for them!

I understand Spring Training games don?t count, but I have two issues with what I see. The first is what I am hearing from the Coach and the Management. Its one thing to ?play off? the poor play of your ball club by making comedic statements or falling back on ?it?s only Spring Training?, but that sounds like Straight Denial. Second, if Spring Training is to prepare your Ball Club for the upcoming season then our season does not look very good. I like to follow the ?You play like you practice? adage. Let us remember: Pitching wins Championships. I think we are in trouble.

“This guy is a joke……Director of Player Development……..really? He has no clue! Did you know he never played in the Major Leagues?”

I’m going to pretend you’re kidding.

By the way, I’m going to pretend that because I can’t off the top of my head name one director of player development who played in the big leagues. Mike Hazen, arguably the best in the business, had a career total of 424 minor league at-bats.

http://houston.mlblogs.com

Mike_r_e: I’m all for giving players with a track record a shot, but there is absolutely no reason to experiment with Andruw Jones. I’d rather see what Brian Bogusevic can do out there instead of take a chance on someone who hasn’t even kept himself in playing shape for the last couple of years.

This whole “fire the coaches” thing wears a little thin, and it’s not even the regular season yet. It’s the easy response and to me, it’s baseless. It takes a slew of people to maintain a successful Major League club. To pinpoint a few hours in the batting cage as the reason why the Astros aren’t pitching or hitting or scoring runs or winning or whatever is usually the excuse we use when we don’t have anything better to say.

That said, the tone is set by the manager and I’m still trying to figure out what tone Cooper is setting. There are things that bug me about this team — it bugs me that Berkman is not required to go on more than three road games all spring; it bothers me that players seemingly have too much say in how things are run. Sometimes I wonder if anyone remembers this team hasn’t won anything in three years.

I can assure you the coaches are working the hardest of anyone in spring camp. They’re the first to arrive, the last to leave and they have a ton on their plate. They work hard, they care and they take it personally when things are not going well.

I myself, tend not to worry too much until the last week of ST. If that week (7-10 days) unfolds with only 1-2 wins or even less, Houston, we have a problem. Additionally, I agree with you AF. The fact that Berkman is only traveling for three games in ST is counter-productive for his own progress (tuning up) and…call me old fashioned, I don’t like the fact that ballplayers make that kind of cash and don’t play. Yes, I know it’s ST, but it still counts, for improved skillsets through repitition and live pitching (game time). I would love to tell my employer, I’m staying home and work on this spreadsheet so it will function much better next week. Even better, have my employer tell me to do just that! ‘Nuff said…oh, except one last comment, you may be wrong about the Bucs…the Astros just might not finish above them (and yes, I am a life-long Astros fan).

OK, Hampton stretches out successfully today (against some real hitters, BTW), Pence is coming around, Smith is making it hard to remember a coulpe of others (David Who?), and the vets are getting a little more time.
Long story short, maybe a longer ST translates to people being too concerned about over-pacing themselves, about guarding against the early injuries, and (to be fair) about giving the youngsters more time early without truly costing the vets their chops. Not sure I like it, but hey, the kids get a few more reps to impress (Smith/Sutton/ Manzella/Saccomanno) or confirm (Nieve), and Coop and Co can settle down around the 20th with their real roster for 2 solid weeks.
Works for me at this point, I remember too many blue and orange teams that were hot in March and done in June…..
Peace from the left coast.

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