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Astros Notes: Crane, Pence, Draft

At 13-22, the Astros currently have the worst record in the National League.  Baseball Prospectus continues to give them a 0.0% chance at the playoffs.  The Astros have scored 4.2 runs per game, which ranks seventh in the league.  However, their bullpen has the NL's worst ERA at 5.40.  The starting pitching has been subpar as well at 4.81, though that ranking is largely due to J.A. Happ (5.75) and the recently-designated Nelson Figueroa (8.28 as a starter).  On to today's notes...

  • Only "a little fine-tuning" remains to complete the sale of the Astros to Jim Crane, reports Bob Allen of ABC 13 out of Houston.  Allen expects the sale price to be around $680MM. 
  • I covered the Astros' 2012 contract issues last week; it will be interesting to see how the new ownership approaches the offseason.  If Hunter Pence reaches 100 RBIs for the first time in his career, will he set a new third-time arbitration record for position players going year by year?  Will the Astros be willing to pay him eight figures? 
  • Astros fans can look forward to the June 6th draft, in which the team picks 11th overall.  Three Baseball America experts did a mock draft as if they were in charge of the teams, and Conor Glassey took Oklahoma high school righty Dylan Bundy for Houston after considering George Springer and Taylor Jungmann.  Prior to the season, prospect gurus such as Keith Law, Kevin Goldstein, and BA all ranked the Astros' farm system 26th or worse among the 30 teams.
  • MLBTR has all kinds of Astros-centric pages to check out: Facebook, Twitter, RSS, and forums.


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