Wednesday roundup: running, running and more running.

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Wednesday’s workouts were slightly shorter than normal because the pitchers, who have been either throwing bullpens or live batting practice every day, were given a day of rest. Instead, manager Brad Mills went heavy on the conditioning drills at the end of the session, which mixed up the routine a little bit and kept things interesting.

I’ll say this about Carlos Lee: he provides plenty of comic relief during these workouts. The conditioning drills were pretty rigorous on Wednesday and involved a lot more than simply jogging from point A to point B. In the middle of outfield sprints, Carlos dropped to the ground, laid on his back, legs and arms spread, and feigned passing out. I think I heard him yell “Trainer!” more than once. The best part was watching everyone ignore him, followed by his teammates simply jumping over him as they finished their sprints. Funny stuff.

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Pitchers will resume throwing live BP on Thursday, and the Astros will play an Intrasquad game Sunday on Field 1 at 11 a.m. The game will be open to the public.

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Quotable:

Mills, on if the rotation order is set:

“No, no, not at all yet. We come up and read in the paper some clubs are already announcing their rotation for the season. This is just our club I’m talking about, but if we start to make those plans now, we don’t know what’s going to happen as far as injuries, how guys throw the ball, how guys do things.

“We’re going to utilize this time to the best of our ability to kind of let guys get in shape and do the things they need to do to be ready. There’s enough first time through that we can kind of map things through later.”

Infielder Bill Hall (who arrived to camp Wednesday after the birth of his daughter Sydni):

“As expected, I’ve been anticipating this for a long time. Once that new year turns over, everybody starts thinking baseball. Watching Baseball Network for the past month and a half, I’ve been mentally ready with anticipation. I’m excited. Obviously, being around a group of guys with so much talent, a lot of youth. I kind of had this kind clubhouse in Milwaukee, so I feel like I’ll fit in just fine. And I’m excited about what this team can do.”

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Throughout the spring season, we’ll be posting one-on-one, getting-to-know you interviews (hosted by yours truly) on Astros.com. Our first one, with third baseman Chris Johnson, is up and running, and you can find it here.

Next up: Bud Norris.

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Today’s photo gallery:

Bunting practice: Jason Bourgeois…

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…and Michael Bourn…

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…and J.B. Shuck.

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Chris Johnson, all smiles while warming up.

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Bill Hall

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J.A. Happ, Brett Myers

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Jason Michaels, Hunter Pence, Carlos Lee during batting practice.

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Pence and Lee in the cages earlier in the morning.

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Ed Wade, Brad Mills

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7 Comments

As a professional athlete, Carlos gets PAID to be in top physical shape. Perhaps his fellow teammates weren’t laughing at him because they didn’t find his antics funny? My wife and I despise his in-the-field performance. I love my Astros, but high BA or low BA, Carlos Lee is by far my least favorite player, because by not respecting his body, he disrespects the game, as well as the fans that pay to watch him play.

^What he said. The contract can’t end soon enough. Bring on J.D. Martinez or Brian Bogusevic or J.B. Shuck or someone…

I have to agree with these folks. Carlos Lee is a joke. It’s an embarrassment that he is the highest paid player on this club. He also sets a poor example for the youth movement. I hope Mills will show him how to respect the game, although I imagine that Lee’s ego feels that he can act a fool and get away with it since he used to be good…used to be.

I have to agree with these folks. Carlos Lee is a joke. It’s an embarrassment that he is the highest paid player on this club. He also sets a poor example for the youth movement. I hope Mills will show him how to respect the game, although I imagine that Lee’s ego feels that he can act a fool and get away with it since he used to be good…used to be.

While Carlos has received his fair share of criticism over the years, I can assure you he was fully engaged in the conditioning workouts yesterday. His falling on the ground was nothing more than a little workout humor, although I’m sure he was exhausted. Those drills were a lot more rigorous than anything I’ve seen this early in Spring Training and I was cramping up just watching it from the sidelines. :)

No doubt you are correct, Alyson, since you are there observing and we are not, but it just seems like lessons should have been learned from Puma’s situation. He engendered much the same criticism because he was always joking about trying to avoid Spring Training activities, and I believe eventually told Richard Justice (for what that’s worth) that he regretted having come across with such an indifferent attitude. I guess $18 million isn’t enough money to catch a clue, though.

I wonder if Ed Wade could wear his pants any higher…

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