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Archive for November 22nd, 2017

I will always remember 54 years ago today. I remember where I was at when I heard the news. I remember what I did the rest of the day and weekend.

Royko sent me this on the border patrol agents:

That’s it! They both tripped, numerous times, and just happened to crush thier sculls. Why does that not work the other way, when the agents are accused?

An investigation is underway. That is really all I can say.

They are going to fix the I-69 and West Loop 610 interchange to ease traffic.  Do you believe that?  I don’t.  It is going to take like five years to complete and then it will be a bigger mess.  They actually want us to believe that building more freeways is going to ease congestion.  They have been telling us that for around 50 years in these parts.   Tell me if you feel less congested.

I am skipping the MLB question today.

Commentary is not a fan of retail outlets opening tomorrow evening. I don’t know who to blame though. The stores or the shoppers? Heck, I don’t even shop on Black Friday.

The ‘Stros’ World Series documentary premiered last night at UH and they had an orange carpet instead of a red carpet – cool. Here is an MLB.com take on last night:

HOUSTON — November remains one of the busiest months of the year for Jeff Luhnow, but even the always-active Astros general manager was willing to make time in his schedule for a premiere of the 2017 World Series documentary.

Luhnow attended an event for the 90-minute showing with Houston manager A.J. Hinch, Hall of Famer Jeff Bagwell and numerous other club staffers. Produced by Major League Baseball, the documentary showcases the franchise’s first World Series title through highlights and exclusive access and interviews.

“It still hasn’t really sunk in,” Luhnow said on the “orange carpet” outside the Cullen Performance Hall on the University of Houston campus, with the Commissioner’s Trophy posed neatly behind him.

“Every day I wake up and think, did we really just do that? There will be time to reflect down the road, but we’re a little busy right now. But I’m really proud of the entire organization and the effort and the accomplishment here.”

Here is the entire read: http://m.astros.mlb.com/news/article/262329798/astros-world-series-documentary-premieres/?topicId=27118380.

Here is MLB.com’s Richard Justice’s take on the documentary:

HOUSTON — Fans showed up to cheer the Astros again Tuesday night, loudly and raucously, stomping, chanting and letting it all go. No use holding anything back when you’ve had 56 years to dream about something.

Only this time, it was different. In some ways, it was better. This time, there was no World Series tension, no anxiety and no more turning off the television to take a breath. As Astros radio broadcaster Steve Sparks said at the beginning of the evening, “You’re going to like the ending.”

So this was a chance to again celebrate one of the greatest moments the fourth-largest city in the country has had.

Actually, what Sparks had said earlier was even better.

“Can you believe why we’re here?” Sparks asked.

That captures what a lot of people were thinking. Sparks had said the same thing as he stood beside the World Series trophy outside the Cullen Center on the University of Houston campus, before Major League Baseball premiered its 90-minute 2017 World Series documentary.

Sparks kept glancing back at the trophy as if it might disappear, as if somebody might come and take it off to St. Louis or Los Angeles or some place that has done this more often than Houston.

“Surreal,” Sparks kept saying. “It just seems surreal.”

And it will for a while longer. This city that had watched others hoist World Series trophies now has one of its own, thanks to a team that was a nearly perfect mix of youth and experience, passion and resolve.

The fans relived the whole thing during the documentary premiere. It was beautifully done — a film that connects on every level in mixing action, interviews and behind-the-scenes drama that puts it all in perspective.

There was Marwin Gonzalez‘s improbable, game-saving ninth-inning home run in Game 2. And the blasts from Carlos Correa, Jose Altuve and George Springer that followed.

There’s that 5-hour, 17-minute Game 5, one in which the Astros overcame deficits of 4-0 and 7-4 to finally win, 13-12, in 10 innings.

There’s Astros hitting coach Dave Hudgens giving Springer a pep talk after his four strikeouts in Game 1. There’s Springer sitting near the batting cage before Game 7 saying, “November 1. Put that in your calendar and remember.”

There’s a sweet moment of Altuve and his wife, Nina, and infant daughter, Melanie, in their home a few hours before Game 3.

If you love baseball, or sports, you will love this film. If you’re an Astros fan, you will watch it again and again.

You will see facial expressions you hadn’t seen before. You will see the tension on the faces of both the Astros and Dodgers.

You will almost feel the vibrations of two packed ballparks, Dodger Stadium and Minute Maid Park, and you will be taken back to a World Series that delivered on everything, from drama to entertainment to great theater.

This was a World Series rich in personalities and players performing at their best with the lights brightest.

You will see tears, too, especially those of Carlos Beltran, this great veteran of the game capping off a 20-year career with a championship.

At the beginning of Tuesday night’s premiere, Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow took the stage to remember his first two seasons, 2012 and ’13, when the Astros lost 107 and 111 games, respectively.

Astros owner Jim Crane was transparent about how things were going to go when he bought the club in late 2011. He said he was going to hire a general manager with a great track record in player development — which would be Luhnow — and he was going to give him the freedom to start anew.

When the Astros lost 111 games, Luhnow got a specialized license plate with “111” on it.

“I wanted to be reminded every single morning and night,” Luhnow said. “You know how many we won this year? That’s right, 112, baby. I’m going to get a new license plate.”

Luhnow’s first major decision was using his first two Draft picks on shortstop Correa and right-hander Lance McCullers Jr. Another smart move was hiring A.J. Hinch to manage the Astros in 2015.

“The manager is the heart and soul of your team,” Luhnow said. “He’s the one the players have to believe in.”

When Luhnow departed the stage, Hinch made the perfect entry, walking slowly, World Series trophy in hand.

“This is ours,” Hinch announced. “It’s been chaos. You people are crazy about the Astros.”

Hinch saluted American League Most Valuable Player Altuve, saying, “As long as he’s on our team, I’m never going to doubt this team.”

And with that, the documentary put the amazing run back on display. Mixed into the film was the story of Hurricane Harvey, both the damage it inflicted on Houston and the way it affected the Astros, individually and collectively.

As Hinch said, “We’re always asking a city to rally around a team. It’s OK to ask a team to rally around a city.”

Or as Springer, the World Series MVP, said, “It shows dreams can come true.”

“I think forever our lives have changed,” McCullers said. “I don’t say we’re legends, but our team is legendary.”

Nice. I can’t figure if it is going to air on the MLB Network or do you have to go buy it.

#EarnedIt.   Commentary is talking about R-E-S-P-E-C-T! From the Chron.

ESPN said Tuesday it will air two Astros games as part of its 10-game schedule for the opening week of the 2018 Major League Baseball season.

The network will air the 2:30 p.m. Thursday, March 29 season opener at Arlington against the Rangers and the 6 p.m. Monday, April 2 home opener against the Orioles at Minute Maid Park. Both games also will air on AT&T SportsNet Southwest.

Hey, we are a good team and America wants to see Jose Altuve, #SpringerDinger, Carlos Correa, Alex Bregman, Justin Verlander, Dallas Keuchel and the rest!

Opening Day, baby!

Commentary will be off for Thanksgiving Day so have a happy one with family and friends. Take care!

 

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