Sunday, April 11, 2010

The 1965 Houston Astros in 2010

Last night's turn-back-the-clock promotion was greatly anticipated by this fan, and we got to Minute Maid Park yesterday in plenty of time to receive the freebie, a shooting-star jersey similar to the ones the team wore when they broke in the gleaming new Astrodome 45 years ago.

Jimmy "Toy Cannon" Wynn, Larry Dierker, and a handful of others who took the field in '65 were on hand to sign autographs and reminisce. The Jumbotron was in black-and-white for the entire evening and the original Astrodome organist replaced the loud rock and country music normally heard between innings and during pitching changes. See more photos here and here.

But the '10 'Stros played like the '65 version, losing 9-6 to the Phils on the strength of a mammoth shot by Ryan Howard and better bullpen pitching after old-timer-in-waiting Jamie Moyer left the game. 

One of the things I really like about Drayton McLane's stewardship of the Astros has been his consistent respect and celebration of the franchise's history. The Bagwell and Biggio retirements over the past couple of seasons, and last night's ceremony as well, serve to provide a real link for those of us who grew up with this team.

But one of the things I really don't like about Drayton McLane has been his consistently poor personnel decisions, from GMs to managers to free agents (anybody remember Doug Drabek and Calvin Swindell? Start there and come forward). They are currently 0-6 on the season, can't hit a lick and are woefully talent-thin on the mound. It's going to be a very long season for these guys if they continue to be as dreadful as they have been so far.

But as long as a day at the ball park can keep beating a day at the office, I suppose I'll still be a fan.

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