Congrats to the Pumas. News, notes and tidbits from inside the clubhouse.
Congratulations to Lance and Cara Berkman, also known as Mr. and Mrs. Puma, who welcomed their fourth daughter to the brood on Monday at 12:44 p.m. — Abigail Primm, weighing in at a healthy seven pounds, nine ounces. She joins big sisters Hannah, Carly and Katie.
Puma looked tired but elated when he arrived to the clubhouse later in the afternoon and proudly informed his teammates, “She’s beautiful.”
Later, the Astros honored Berkman — not for the baby, but for a pretty significant home run. This homestand could be renamed Milestone Week. The Astros planned a grand total of three pregame ceremonies to commemorate three players reaching noteworthy statistical marks. First, on Tuesday, they saluted Berkman for his 300th home run, which he hit during the recent road trip (June 13 at Minnesota). On Friday, they’ll recognize Miguel Tejada’s 2,000th hit, recorded on the same night Puma hit No. 300.
Finally, on Saturday, the Astros will honor Pudge Rodriguez, who set the all-time games caught record while the Astros were playing the Rangers in Arlington.
Overheard in the clubhouse:
* Doug Brocail, recovering from a hamstring tear, when asked if he thinks he’ll play again this year: “Absolutely. Yes. Absolutely.” Soon after he suffered the injury in early May, I asked him when he thought he might return. He said, “When’s the All-Star break?” I told him the week of July 11, and he said, “Let’s shoot for that.”
On Tuesday, he proudly showed me he could stretch the hamstring, something he hasn’t been able to do until recently.
* Drayton McLane stopped by the clubhouse to say hello to the team and offer his congratulations on the new baby Puma. As he made his rounds, a few reporters intercepted him with questions about the team and the season so far. MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart has the rundown here.
Couple of reminders…
* Remember that suspended game in Washington last month? The score was tied, 10-10, in the bottom of the 11th, and that’s exactly where it will pick up on July 9 at Minute Maid Park, prior to the first game of a scheduled four-game set with the Nationals. The suspended game will resume at 6:05 p.m. CT, with Josh Willingham at the plate, a runner on first and one out in the 11th. The Nationals will be the home team until the game reaches its conclusion.
The regularly scheduled game will begin no earlier than 7:05 p.m. CT.
* The “Kids Free All Summer” ticket special began Tuesday and will run through Aug. 23. There’s no catch or fine print — simply, for every full-price adult ticket you purchase in the View Deck I, View Deck II or Mezzanine, you can get two free tickets in the same price level for kids 14 and under.
*Continuing with their season-long look back at 10 years at Minute Maid Park, the Astros have posted Carlos Lee’s favorite Houston memory on their blog. You can also read memories from Craig Biggio, Jeff Bagwell and others on this same blog.