Morning roundup: Bagwell debuts on ‘Grey’s’, single game tickets on sale, and Bobblehead news.

The only connection that ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy has to our fair city of Houston, that I can think of, is Chandra Wilson, who plays the outspoken yet lovable Dr. Miranda Bailey and has been a staple of the show since it first aired six years ago. She grew up in Houston, attended the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and performed at a very young age at the Theatre Under the Stars.

I have no idea if Wilson’s allegiance to her hometown had anything to do with Jeff Bagwell getting a mention on last night’s show — in fact, it’s highly doubtful, considering Wilson is not one of the show’s writers — but it was pretty cool nonetheless.

I was well on my way to falling into a wonderful Ambien-induced slumber when the scene aired, so forgive me if the details are fuzzy. Scene: two guys, both of whom seemed to be fighting over Teddy, got to talking amongst themselves. One of them had briefly pitched in the Major Leagues. Guy 1 to Guy 2: “Did you ever pitch to Jeff Bagwell?” Guy 2 to Guy 1: “Once. It wasn’t pretty.”

That would be the second time the Astros have been mentioned on a hit medical drama. Remember back in 1997 when “ER” aired a live episode? The Astros-Cubs game was playing in the background. It happened to be the night the Astros clinched the division, and if I remember correctly, Brad Ausmus’s home run was playing when the cameras panned on the television.

So, even if our guys are sometimes ignored on the national sports landscape, it’s nice to know we’ve got the prime time, hospital-themed drama market cornered.

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Single-game tickets go on sale today at 9 a.m. CT and can be purchased online at astros.com, at the Astros Spanish website, astrosdehouston.com, at the ballpark Box Office on Texas Avenue or by phone toll free at 1-877-9ASTROS (1-877-927-8767).

You can find a full list of promotional giveaways on astros.com, but here are a few highlights to whet your whistle:

On Opening Day (April 8), the Astros are giving away 2011 schedule magnets to the first 40,000 fans. Michael Bourn Bobbleheads — celebrating his second consecutive Rawlings Gold Glove Award — will be given away on April 10.

The Astros are hosting two Dog Days this year: April 17, and Sept. 9. Fans can enjoy the game with their canine friends in designated areas of the ballpark and partake in in a pregame “Pooch Parade.” (Complete with real-live poopie picker-uppers.)

The Astros will again “Play Green” in 2011 and will celebrate Green Week April. 26-May 1. A reusable grocery tote bag will be given away on April 28, followed by a Play Green Bobblehead featuring Play Green ambassador Hunter Pence (April 30).

In early May, the Astros will celebrate Pink in the Park Week (May 9-15) as the ballclub raises awareness and funds for breast cancer research. A variety of events, including a Ladies Golf Tournament, Brunch and Bazaar, Ladies Night (May 13) and Wine and Cheese Night (May 14) are planned. Giveaways that weekend include a Pink Tote Bag (May 13), and a bobblehead featuring Chris Johnson with a pink bat (May 14), which has become synonymous with the league-wide commitment to women’s health and breast cancer research.

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FanFest will take place Opening weekend, April 8-10. We’ll reveal the details as it gets closer, but among the highlights will be current player and alumni autograph sessions, Talkin’ Baseball seminars and silent auctions.

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On to today’s links:

MLB.com

In Brian McTaggart’s notes roundup, we learn that Ryan Rowland-Smith has chucked his signature glasses in favor of contact lenses and that Jeff Keppinger hopes to get his walking boot off by next week.

Tags also features a brash and bold Brett Myers, now a senior member of the starting staff.

Chronicle

Justice: Jason Castro gets high praise from coaches

I thought it was interesting, but not at all surprising, that it was pitching coach Brad Arnsberg who first took Castro into the video room to study opposing hitters and also familiarize himself with his battery partner for that day’s game. Arnie spends hours studying tape in that video room and apparently pitchers aren’t the only ones reaping the benefits.

Zachary Levine tackles Bud’s stomach flu, Pence’s day in Arizona and prospect Delino DeShields Jr.’s pending day in court.

1 Comment

One of the writers for Grey’s Anatomy, Stacy McKee, is a Houston native. She wrote the episode with the Bagwell line. That’s probably the reason for the Bagwell shout out.

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