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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #1
this years off season rumors, signings, and trades should happen soon so i thought we should have a thread where we can discuss all those things along with our wishlists and thoughts on what management does.

first of all, i hope this off season goes a lot better than last. its easy to accidently come to the assumption that the last off season must have been good, but we didnt. first of all, we waited so long for clemens to announce he was coming back, it elimated an early start on other free agents. then we spent so much time trying to throw money at beltran that we got practically nothing done. purpura failed to make an actual move to retain jeff kent who said he wanted to stay but didnt get any real offers or communication from purpura. we did very little last off season and our offense suffered because of it.

the one rumor i have hear thus far is that the mets are pursuing ausmus and the astros are interested in matheny. the matheny rumor came from the ausmus rumor. i saw this on fsn but i wouldnt put too much into it.
For now, baseball becomes a waiting game. The Astros need to know where, and if, Clemens figures into the equation, and they'll need to know if Ausmus wants to return to Houston or sign elsewhere, like San Diego, where he lives year-round. The Padres seemingly have interest in the free agent catcher, which will create competition for the Astros.
"A lot hinges on what Roger intends to do," Purpura said. "Some hinges on what [Ausmus] wants to do. If he comes back, we've got [Humberto] Quintero and Chavez. We might not need both."
http://mlb.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/article.jsp?ymd=20051107&content_id=1265537&vkey=news_hou&fext=.jsp&c_id=hou
im glad we are trying to keep ausmus as i think he was an important part of the team.

on the offense, some names are guaranteed to be back, like biggio, berkman, ensberg, taveras, lamb, and lane. if bagwell gets healthy over the winter, he could be a very important player. burke will likely be back, but he will be forced to play out of position again. if we can trade him for a power hitting left fielder, i think we should do it in a heart beat. if berkman's leg heals up he could go back to left fulltime. if the astros are serious about adding more pop to their line up, trading the defensive minded everett could be a step in the right direction, but im not even sure they will want to do that.

As weird as it may sound, i think clemens would be better of retiring this year. despite he great ERA, the astros lost more than they won with him on the mound. it would really free up money for the astros to make some moves. we would still have pettitte and oswalt as 2 ace starters, backe who is solid, rodriguez and astacio who could potentially have good seasons. we could also look for other starters who would come much cheaper.
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #2
Astros drop Gipson and Gothreaux to make room for new prospects and let Burns go to Cincinattie.
The club purchased the contracts of righthanders Matt Albers, Jimmy Barthmaier, Jason Hirsh and Felipe Paulino, and outfielder Josh Anderson. To make room on the roster, the Astros released outfielder Charles Gipson and outrighted righthander Jared Gothreaux to Class AAA Round Rock.

Reliever Mike Burns, who pitched in 27 games for the Astros in 2005, was claimed off waivers by the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday, leaving the Astros with 33 players on their 40-man roster.

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/sports/bb/3471215.html
Astros also hope to resign there free agents, Clemens, Springer, Ausmus, Palmeiro, and Vizcaino. if they all return, that leaves 2 roster spots to sign some sluggers. 2 roster spots and what'd i'd assume is too little money to get any good sluggers.
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #4
i havent really see jones play, but he has the good slg% and hrs that the astros need to drive in run. im still worried that purpura wont want to make any changes and will just sit back and let these guys develop. playing lamb, lane, and just letting berkman get healthy could really help our offensive production, but something more certain would be nice. and it seems the astros are set on having everett return and taveras in center. i would like the astros to get a proven performer, but im not sure it will happen.

edit: anyone want to add more input on jacque jones?
 

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Yes, JJ is a good slugger, but tend to get struck out more than desired. Although he improved just last season with less Ks than in 2004, that is a big plus. He is an ok baserunner, he can still steal bases once in a whole, but he is no Torii Hunter. Defensively, he is amazing out there making catches Lance Berkman might not able to catch and all that.
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #6
i wonder if purpura is doing anything right now. this offseason is shaping up to be even less productive. at least offseason we were actively lobbying clemens and going after beltran. clemens is hurting the team with waiting with his answer. he knows we need to set aside money for him and if he doesnt take it, we are going to waste so much of the offseason. if it wasnt for the revenue he brings in, i would see no reason to wait for him at all.
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #8
3.Bobby Abreu
[...]
So the matches are minimal. But get ready for rumors about the Cardinals (for Jason Marquis), Orioles (for Erik Bedard), Yankees (for Chien-Ming Wang), Giants (for Jason Schmidt), Astros (for Chad Qualls and Brandon Backe), Diamondbacks (if Javier Vazquez would agree to go to Philadelphia) and A's (for Zito, if there was a way to even out the money). One of them just might come true.
link

marquis is already gone for the cardinals, right? if backe leaves and clemens doesnt return, that puts in a bad place for our starting pitching.

either way though, purpura seems interested on the cheap route.

HOUSTON -- The Houston Astros aren't likely to participate in bidding wars for high-priced free agents, but general manager Tim Purpura hopes to land a proven bat that could bolster an offense that finished in the bottom five in nearly every category in 2005.
[...]
Even so, don't expect the extra dollars to go to free agents from outside the organization this year. The money will go to Clemens and Brad Ausmus, should they decide to return, along with key arbitration-eligible players such as Brad Lidge, Morgan Ensberg, Adam Everett and Dan Wheeler -- key components of the World Series team.

The focus at the Winter Meetings will be impact players who have experience, but are also affordable. Very, very affordable.
link

that just doesnt seem likely. if we want a real impact we need to spend money. purpura just doesnt want to deal any of our young players. if he want to take advantage of the talent and increase our chances of winning the world series next year, he needs to be willing to do it. if he wants to remain just another team taking a shot at and hoping for the wild card for the next 10 years, then he should keep doing what he is doing.
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #9
Garner would also like the club to explore obtaining offensive help, but at the same time, the skipper can't envision where they would want to make a change. If the season started tomorrow, there aren't too many question marks as to who will play where. In that respect, the question is not who is available via trade or free agency, but where would you put him?

"I would assume that [Brad] Ausmus would come back and I would assume [Jeff] Bagwell is going to be back and playing," Garner said. "We have [Craig] Biggio at second, [Adam] Everett at short, Morgan [Ensberg] at third, [Lance] Berkman in left field, a kid that finished second in Rookie of the Year voting [Willy Taveras] in center field and Jason Lane [in right field]. I don't know what you would do.
link

garner doesnt seem to want to change the offense at all. with ensberg, a healthier berkman, and hopefully healthy bagwell, and if willy and some other young guys improve, we could do alright with the current set. i would like to see lane and some prospects or lane and burke or something get shipped for a better right fielder. someone more consistent. if willy isnt driving the ball early next season, i think he should be shipped out in a search for a better cf.
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #10
"Less than 24 hours after offering salary arbitration to Orlando Palmeiro, the Houston Astros signed the outfielder to a two-year contract with $1.9 million, plus award bonuses."

link

we were able to bring back the pinch hitter we wanted (vizcaino was not asked to enter arbitration) with out any trouble. the guy is a good intelligent hitter who provides good at bats. one of the top pinch hitters in the league
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #12
ausmus signs a 2 yr 7.5 million dollar deal. saw it on tv so im not gonna supply a link to this one.

also heard a rumor on espn that we might be after nomar to play the outfield.
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #13
found the link

lamb also signed a 1 year $1.7 mil deal.
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #14
luke scott came from no where last spring to start some games last season and has had a good run this winter in the italian league. he will try to start for the astros again, but preston wilson's signing means he is less likely to get a starting job next year. for the full story and to see what other astros are having an eventful winter, click here
 

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Not Just Dumb, Aggie Dumb
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Discussion Starter #15
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