Posts Tagged ‘Houston Astros’

Houston Astros’ Brandon Lyon Undergoes Surgery

February 11, 2010

I got on Houston Astros’ GM Ed Wade pretty hard when he signed RHP Brandon Lyon to a three-year, $15 million contract back in December. Here is what I wrote:

“This is a great day for Lyon and a sad, sad day for Astro fans.

How quickly do you think Meister and Lyon signed this contract? Five seconds? Two seconds?

This is the single worst deal of the offseason so far. What are the Astros thinking? To give Lyon three years to be their closer, when this guy can’t close is absurd.”

The contract was absurd then and it’s absurd now. It’s even more absurd now because Lyon had a procedure done to his pitching shoulder just two months after his signed his contract.

Lyon had surgery two weeks ago to remove a cyst in his pitching shoulder according to the Associated Press.

“Brandon was experiencing some weakness and discomfort in his shoulder, and we brought him in a couple of weeks ago to be seen,” general manager Ed Wade said. “At the time of his pre-signing physical, his right shoulder MRI showed a very small cyst, and when the MRI was repeated recently, it showed that the cyst had enlarged and was pressing on some nerves.”

So let me understand this and I believe I do. The Astros saw a cyst in a guy’s pitching shoulder, thought it was no big deal, signed him to a contract two years too long, and then nearly months later the guy needs surgery to remove that cyst?

Good to see the Astros are using the same doctors as the New York Mets. My lord. What a clown show.

Lyon will be ready to pitch by Opening Day. I am not sure that is such a good thing for Astros fans.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Advertisements

Miguel Tejada, Orioles Reunite In Baltimore

January 24, 2010

I really like what the Baltimore Orioles have done this offseason. They have brought in a nice group of veterans to mix in with the young and up-and-coming talent they have.

The key to what they are doing is they are not signing any of these veteran players to contracts that could be considered an albatross down the road. These veterans are on one or two-year contracts and aren’t blocking any of the prospects the Orioles have in the minors.

Tejada is returning to the Orioles

The latest veteran the Orioles have brought in–Miguel Tejada.

According to Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun, the Orioles have signed Tejada to a one-year, $6 million contract. Despite never playing an inning at third base in his career, Tejada is expected to play third for the Orioles in 2010.

This will mark Tejada’s second tour of duty with the Orioles. Baltimore signed Tejada back in the Winter of 2004 and spent four years in an Orioles’ uniform.

In those four years, Tejada hit .311 (great band) with 102 home runs, and an .862 OPS. Tejada was later traded to the Houston Astros in December of 2007 for Mike Costanzo, Matt Albers, Troy Patton, Dennis Sarfate, and Luke Scott.

Despite signing third baseman Garrett Atkins earlier in the offseason, the Orioles were still looking for a corner infielder to play either third or first. Tejada fills exactly what the Orioles were looking for.

Tejada really dropped off defensively in 2009 (-13.9 UZR), so moving to third will help prolong his career. As I recall the Orioles moved another shortstop back in the day to third to help prolong his career and it worked swimmingly.

The Tejada signing allows the Orioles to move Atkins to first, where he is better suited and Luke Scott back to DH. Ty Wigginton is the odd man out here, as he will be moved into a bench role.

With Tejada and Atkins signed to one-year contracts, it will give top prospects Josh Bell (third base) and Brandon Snyder (first base) some extra seasoning in the minors until they are ready to take over full-time in 2011. Once again, the Orioles sign a veteran, but aren’t blocking their prospects.

I expect Tejada to bat fifth or sixth in the Orioles’ lineup and hit around .285/.290 with 10-15 home runs in 2010. At $6 million, this signing will pay for itself by July. Good signing by the Orioles.

This move also ends the Orioles pursuit of first baseman Carlos Delgado.

Tejada will be entering his 14th season in the major leagues and has a career .289 average with 285 home runs with the Oakland A’s, Orioles, and Astros. He won the 2002 AL MVP with the A’s.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Starting Rotation: National League Central

January 22, 2010

Today, I am going to take a look at the starting rotations for each National League Central team.

Pitchers like Adam Wainwright, Chris Carpenter, and Roy Oswalt call this division home. This division has quality pitchers throughout.

Here are the starting rotations for each National League Central team as presently constructed.

St. Louis Cardinals

1. Chris Carpenter, RHP

2. Adam Wainwright, RHP

3. Kyle Lohse, RHP

4. Brad Penny, RHP

5. TBD

Quick Take – This rotation is very top heavy with Carpenter and Wainwright leading the way. Carpenter’s health is key. If he is healthy, the Cardinals will be favorites to win the division. I like the Penny signing. The Cardinals don’t have a candidate for the fifth starter right now, so look for them to sign someone.

Milwaukee Brewers

1. Yovani Gallardo, RHP

2. Randy Wolf, LHP

3. Dave Bush, RHP

4. Doug Davis, LHP

5. Jeff Suppan, RHP

Quick Take – With the additions of Wolf and Davis, this rotation is vastly improved from 2009. Wolf and Davis will give the Brewers innings. Look for Gallardo to continue to develop into an ace. Suppan will battle with Manny Parra for the No.5 starter spot.

Chicago Cubs

1. Carlos Zambrano, RHP

2. Ryan Dempster, RHP

3. Randy Wells, RHP

4. Ted Lilly, LHP

5. Tom Gorzelanny, LHP

Quick Take – This might be the most overrated pitching staff in baseball. Dempster has had one good year in the last seven years and was not worthy of his contract. It’s up in the air whether or not Lilly will be ready for Opening Day. I am starting to wonder if all those innings Zambrano threw earlier in his career is coming back to haunt him now?

Cincinnati Reds

1. Bronson Arroyo, RHP

2. Aaron Harang, RHP

3. Johnny Cueto, RHP

4. Homer Bailey, RHP

5. TBD

Quick Take – This rotation will really miss Edinson Volquez in 2010. Volquez might pitch in 2010, but not until towards the end of the season. Arroyo and Harang are prime trade candidates. The Reds’ No.5 starter spot is open right now. I don’t think it will be Aroldis Chapman to start the season.

Houston Astros

1. Roy Oswalt, RHP

2. Wandy Rodriguez, LHP

3. Brett Myers, RHP

4. Bud Norris, RHP

5. Brian Moehler, RHP

Quick Take – From where this rotation was at the beginning of 2009, the Astros have come a long way. Astros need Oswalt to have a bounce back year. Norris showed potential last season, but needs to cut down on his walks and needs to show development next season.

Pittsburgh Pirates

1. Paul Maholm, LHP

2. Zach Duke, LHP

3. Ross Ohlendorf, RHP

4. Charlie Morton, RHP

5. Kevin Hart, RHP

Quick Take – I really feel bad for Maholm and Duke. If they were on better teams, they would be more recognized and people would know how good they are. Morton came over to the Pirates in the Nate McLouth trade and at 26, he needs to step up and prove he belongs in the major leagues.

Tomorrow, I will have the final installment of this series and take a look at the division where pitching dominates–the National League West.

Detroit Tigers Find Their Closer, Sign Jose Valverde

January 15, 2010

After last year’s closer Fernando Rodney and set-up man Brandon Lyon left the Detroit Tigers to sign with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and Houston Astros, the Tigers were in search of a closer. Instead of going with an in-house option like Ryan Perry, the Tigers went in a different direction.

The Tigers searched the free agent market for a closer and found Jose Valverde. According to Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports, the Tigers have signed Valverde to a two-year, $14 million contract with a $9 million option for a third year.

Valverde will be closing for the Tigers in 2010

Since Valverde was a Type-A free agent and was offered arbitration by the Astros, Houston will receive the Tigers first round pick (19th overall) in the 2010 June Draft.

This is quite the interesting signing by the Tigers. Weren’t they poor at the beginning of the free agency period?

Wasn’t the reason they traded Curtis Granderson and Edwin Jackson is because they wanted to trim payroll? The Tigers couldn’t afford to keep Granderson at a respectable $5.5 million for 2010, but they could afford a closer at $7 million?

On top of spending $7 million on Valverde, the Tigers have to surrender a first round pick in next year’s draft. On the surface, financially this signing makes no sense.

On the field, I get why the Tigers signed Valverde. As a closer, he is pretty good.

He is coming off a year where he had a 2.33 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP. Over the last three years, Valverde as a 2.84 ERA and has averaged 10.3 K/9. He has been one of the more consistent closers in the National League over that period.

However, Valverde did spend time on the DL last year (non-throwing arm related) and had the lowest K/9 ratio of his career at 9.3. That might be some cause for concern going into 2010.

The Tigers clearly did not feel comfortable giving the ball in the ninth inning to Ryan Perry and at this point, I don’t think they can trust Joel Zumaya to stay healthy over the course of a full season.

Again, I don’t mind the signing for what Valverde will bring on the field, but something is going on behind the scenes in Detroit where they have people like me scratching their heads.

It’s hard to sell your fans on why you traded one of your more popular players and then go ahead and sign a closer for more money than you were paying Granderson.

The Tigers have had one confusing offseason so far.

Valverde will be entering his eighth season in 2010 and has a career 3.17 ERA and 167 saves in 386 innings with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Astros.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Houston Astros Sign Brett Myers

January 9, 2010

Back in January of last year (actually almost one year to the day), I wrote a post “Looking at 2010 to predict 2009.” The idea was to see which players would have a big year in 2009 based on their free agency status after the season ended.

I called this big year the “Adrian Beltre year.”

The pitcher I had targeted to have a big year or an “Adrian Beltre year” was the Philadelphia Phillies’ Brett Myers. Here is what I wrote about Myers last January:

Myers gave up a lot of HR's in 2009

“After being summoned to the bullpen in 2007, Myers had a descent 2008 by going 10-13 with a 4.55 in 190 innings. Like Blalock, there are a couple of things I like about Myers this year.

1. It seems like Myers has been in the majors forever but he is still only 29 years old. The ages of 28 and 29 is usually when a pitcher comes into his own.

2. This will be the first time Myers will be pitching for a free agent contract.

3. Myers will be pitching once again on a good team with a solid bullpen which won’t blow leads for him late in the game.”

Well, things always don’t work out the way you think they would.

Myers struggled in April and May giving up 17 home runs in 63.2 IP, went on the disabled list, ended up having hip surgery, and returned in September only to find himself in the bullpen. Even my thought that the Phillies would have a solid bullpen in 2009 didn’t hold true.

Overall on the season, Myers went 4-3 with a 4.84 ERA, gave up 18 home runs in 70.2 innings, and had his lowest K/9 ratio since 2004 (6.4).

Despite having a rough season in 2009, the Houston Astros are hoping Myers can bounce back in 2010. According to MLB.com’s Brian McTaggert, via Twitter, the Astros have signed Myers to a one-year, $5 million deal. The deal also includes an option for 2012.

One of the reasons that Myers signed with the Astros is because the Astros offered him a spot in their rotation. Myers will be the Astros No. 3 starter heading into 2010 behind Roy Oswalt and Wandy Rodriguez. Bud Norris and Felipe Paulino should round out the rotation.

I have my doubts as to whether or not Myers can improve on his gopher ball habits pitching in Minute Maid Park. However, considering the Astros started the 2009 season with Russ Ortiz and Brian Moehler in the starting rotation, Myers does represent an upgrade in 2010.

Myers is the third acquisition the Astros have made to bolster their pitching staff this offseason. Earlier in this offseason, the Astros signed Brandon Lyon and traded for Matt Lindstrom.

Despite their acquisitions to the pitching staff, the Astros still strike me as a fourth or fifth place team in the NL Central. I expect the Astros to finish behind the St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago Cubs, Milwaukee Brewers, and perhaps the Cincinnati Reds in 2010.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

The Great Randy Johnson Announces His Retirement

January 6, 2010

On a conference call straight out of “The Office,” Randy Johnson announced his retirement last night.

Not wanting too much attention and not wanting to take away from the announcement of who will be elected into this year’s class of the Baseball Hall of Fame, Johnson decided to hold a conference call to say he was hanging up his spikes at around 7:00 pm ET on Tuesday.

Johnson announced his retirement on Tuesday

I say it was a scene out of “The Office” because when the call first started, it was complete chaos. Johnson started his speech and then stopped and then had to start it again. Reporters were dialing into the conference call at different times, so all you heard for the first five minutes were beeps.

I was like what is going on here?

But things got settled and Johnson went into the reasons why he was retiring. Johnson said he accomplished everything he wanted to in the game (I’ll say) and he wanted to retire on his own terms.

A lot can be said about Johnson, the pitcher. Here is what I wrote about Johnson when he won his 300th game last June:

“When he was on top of his game, there was nobody as intimidating and as dominating as Johnson. He is without a doubt a sure-fire first ballot Hall of Famer.

“Is he the greatest left-handed pitcher ever?

“That I can’t answer. I certainly never saw Eddie Plank, Lefty Grove, Warren Spahn or Carl Hubbell pitch. And I only saw Steve Carlton towards the end of his career when he was hanging on with Phillies, Indians and Twins.

“What I can tell you is that he is the best left-handed pitcher in the last 25 years. His only competition would be Tom Glavine and I would take Johnson any day of the week over Glavine and twice on Sunday. I am not even sure that is an argument.

“For my money, if I had to pick one pitcher in his prime to win me Game Seven of the World Series, Randy Johnson would be that pitcher. I am sure the Johnson detractors (Mostly Yankee fans who saw Johnson crumble in the postseason when he was with them) will point to his 7-9 postseason record and say Johnson didn’t do it in when it counts.

“That is the biggest bunch of Tom Foolery I have ever heard.

“In 1995 with Seattle and in 2001 with Arizona, Johnson single handily beat the Yankees in both series. He went 3-0, won the World Series MVP in the 2001 World Series, and even pitched in relief on one day’s rest.

Period. End of argument.”

Seven months later, I still stand by Johnson has the best left-handed pitcher of the last 25 years and the one pitcher I would take to win me a Game Seven.

He was truly one of the all-time greats.

Johnson will finish his career with a record of 303-166 with a 3.29 ERA, 100 complete games, 4,875 strike outs, and five Cy Young awards in 22 seasons with the Montreal Expos, Seattle Mariners, Houston Astros, Arizona Diamondbacks, New York Yankees, and San Francisco Giants.

His 4,875 strike outs rank second all time to Nolan Ryan’s 5,714. His five Cy Young awards also rank second to Roger Clemens’ seven.

Johnson will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2015.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Orioles Add Two, Sign Garrett Atkins and Mike Gonzalez

December 17, 2009

Just because the Orioles are in rebuilding mode, doesn’t mean they can’t add pieces to their team to make them competitive in 2010.

Earlier in this offseason, the Orioles added Kevin Millwood to bolster their starting rotation. Now they have added a batter and a closer.

According to the Baltimore Sun, the Orioles have signed LHP Mike Gonzalez to a two-year, $12 million contract to be their closer. Gonzalez can make an additional $4 million in incentives.

Gonzalez is the new closer in Baltimore

The Orioles also signed 1B/3B Garrett Atkins to a one-year deal. Atkins became a free agent after he was not tendered a contract by the Colorado Rockies last week. Terms of Atkins’ deal have not been disclosed yet.

Lets talk about Atkins first.

I was reading some sites around the web where some Orioles fans didn’t like this move? Why?

Has Atkins’ OPS dropped four years in a row? Yes it has. Is he the best defensive third baseman in the world? No, he is not.

But Atkins was not brought to Baltimore to be the savior. He was brought to Baltimore to be a stopgap until top third base prospect Josh Bell or until top first base prospect Brandon Snyder are ready.

Best case scenario for Atkins–he has a bounce back year and the Orioles can then trade him for prospects in July. Atkins could just need a change of scenery and Camden Yards is a good hitters park.

Worst case scenario–he continues his downward spiral and becomes a right-handed pinch hitter off the bench, who can occasionally fill in at first or third. In 2009, Atkins’ OPS was over 200 points higher versus left-handed pitching.

This is a good low-risk, high-reward signing by the Orioles.

Now on to the Gonzalez signing.

I am luke-warm on Gonzalez being a full-time, No. One closer, but for just $6 million a year–it’s a good deal by the Orioles.

Think about it like this. The Houston Astros paid Brandon Lyon $5 million a year for three years. The Orioles are paying Gonzalez $6 million for two years.

Who would you rather have?

I would rather have Gonzalez and it’s not even a debatable in my opinion. The Orioles are paying just $1 million more for clearly the better pitcher. Good move.

Gonzalez pitched a career high 74.1 innings last year and in those 74.1 innings struck out 90 batters. He was especially nasty on left-handed hitters.

Lefties against Gonzalez in 2009 hit only .194 and had a pedestrian .581 OPS. The Gonzalez-Curtis Granderson match up in 2010 should be fun to watch.

Is there some concern with Gonzalez after he pitched a career high in innings last year only a couple of years removed from Tommy John surgery? Maybe. But I don’t it’s that big of a concern.

As Gonzalez proved last year, most pitchers come back stronger from Tommy John surgery. For two years and just $12 million, it’s certainly worth it for the Orioles.

This move obviously adds some much needed depth to the Orioles’ bullpen and it allows them to put Jim Johnson back in the eighth inning set-up role, where he seemed more comfortable last year.

With Gonzalez, Johnson, and Koji Uehara the Orioles have the makings of a much better bullpen in 2010.

I like what the Orioles are doing this offseason. They are sticking to their rebuilding plan, but adding pieces with reasonable contracts here and there.

I like the direction of this team.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Recapping The Rule 5 Draft

December 11, 2009

Today, Major League Baseball held its annual Rule 5 Draft. The Rule 5 Draft takes place around this time every year at the Baseball Winter Meetings.

For those of you who are not familiar with the Rule 5 Draft, here is a great overview courtesy of Baseball America’s Alan Schwarz:

“Major league teams must protect players on their 40-man rosters within three or four years of their original signing. Those left unprotected are available to other teams as Rule 5 picks.

“Players who were 18 or younger on June 5 preceding the signing of their first contract must be protected after four minor league seasons. Players 19 and older must be protected after three seasons.

“But here’s the kicker: To prevent teams from drafting players willy-nilly, each Rule 5 pick must be kept in the major leagues the entire following season or be offered back to his former team for half of the $50,000 selection price. Few players are ready for such a jump, so only about 10-15 get picked each year. Fewer still last the whole season in the big leagues.

Now you might be thinking why would I care about a draft were the players aren’t good enough to make a team’s 40-man roster? Well, you should care because some of the best players in the game today were taken in the Rule 5 Draft.

Santana was a Rule 5 Draft pick

Johan Santana, Joakim Soria, Shane Victorino, Josh Hamilton, and Dan Uggla are all current players who were taken in the Rule 5 Draft. Past players who were taken include All Stars George Bell, Kelly Gruber, Bobby Bonilla, and Roberto Clemente.

So as you can see, a team can definitely find a diamond in the rough in this draft.

Here is a recap of the major league phase of the Rule 5 Draft:

1. Washington Nationals: Jamie Hoffmann, OF. Drafted from Los Angeles Dodgers

2. Pittsburgh Pirates: John Raynor, OF. Drafted from Florida Marlins

3. Baltimore Orioles: Benjamin Snyder, LHP. Drafted from San Francisco Giants

4. Kansas City Royals: Edgar Osuna, LHP. Drafted from Atlanta Braves

5. Cleveland Indians: Hector Ambriz, RHP. Drafted from Arizona Diamondbacks

6. Arizona Diamondbacks: Zachery Kroenke, LHP. Drafted from New York Yankees

7. New York Mets: Carlos Monasterios, RHP. Drafted from Philadelphia Phillies

8. Houston Astros: Jorge Jimenez, 3B. Drafted from Boston Red Sox

9. Oakland A’s: Robert Cassevah, RHP. Drafted from Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

10. Toronto Blue Jays: Zechry Zinicola, RHP. Drafted from Washington Nationals

11. Milwaukee Brewers: Chuck Lofgren, LHP. Drafted from Cleveland Indians

12. Chicago Cubs: Michael Parisi, RHP. Drafted from St. Louis Cardinals

13. Tampa Bay Rays: Armando Zerpa, LHP. Drafted from Boston Red Sox

14. Seattle Mariners: Kenekoa Texeira, RHP. Drafted from New York Yankees

15. San Francisco Giants: Steven Johnson, RHP. Drafted from Baltimore Orioles

16. St. Louis Cardinals: Ben Jukich, LHP. Drafted from Cincinnati Reds

17. Philadelphia Phillies: David Herndon, RHP. Drafted from Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

A couple of notes about this draft:

– Not every team had a pick because not every team had an open spot on the 40-man roster.

– The Red Sox, Yankees, and Angels had the most players taken with two each.

– The Rule 5 Draft is usually pitching centric and this year was no different. Out of the 17 picks, 14 were pitchers.

– Jamie Hoffmann was traded by the Nationals to the Yankees to complete the Brian Bruney trade.

– Benjamin Snyder was traded by the Orioles to the Rangers to complete the Kevin Millwood trade.

– Jorge Jimenez was traded by the Astros to the Marlins to complete the Matt Lindstrom trade.

– You can find the Triple-A and Double-A phase of the draft here.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Astros Find A New Third Baseman, Sign Pedro Feliz

December 10, 2009

Its been a puzzling offseason so far for Houston Astros’ GM Ed Wade.

He makes a good move in trading for Matt Lindstrom, then he makes a horrific move in signing Brandon Lyon to a three-year deal, and now he makes a good value move.

It’s like for every two steps forward, he takes one step back.

Today, Wade inked former Philadelphia Philly third baseman Pedro Feliz to a one-year, $4.5 million contract–good value signing by the Astros.

Feliz, who was made available after the Phillies declined his 2010 option, hit .266/.308/.386 12 home runs in 158 games last year. Outside of the pitcher, he was widely regarded as the easiest out in the Phillies’ lineup.

Feliz is now an Astro

While Feliz is an average batter at best–he is not an average fielder. Feliz is a very good defensive player. He had a 5.0 UZR (Ultimate Zone Rating), which ranked towards the top of all third baseman in 2009.

At $4.5 million, this is a good deal for the Astros. Feliz was worth about $5.7 million to the Phillies last season. Plus, Feliz is an upgrade over Geoff Blum, who played the majority of the games (102) at third base for the Astros in 2009.

This deal was first reported by ESPN.com’s Jorge Arangure, via Enrique Rojas, via Twitter.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Houston We Have A Major Problem; Astros Sign Brandon Lyon To Thee-Year Deal

December 10, 2009

I am going to call Barry Meister this morning and ask him to represent me at my next salary negotiation at work.

Meister is the agent for Brandon Lyon and right now is the smartest guy in the room. For those of you who are not aware, Lyon signed a contract with the Houston Astros last night. Lyon signed a three-year, $15 million deal with the Astros.

This is a great day for Lyon and a sad, sad day for Astro fans.

How quickly do you think Meister and Lyon signed this contract? Five seconds? Two seconds?

Lyon will be a mess in Houston

This is the single worst deal of the offseason so far. What are the Astros thinking? To give Lyon three years to be their closer, when this guy can’t close is absurd.

Here is what I wrote in my free agent primer:

“Biggest Free Agent Relief Pitcher Bust: Brandon Lyon. If a team signs Lyon as an eighth inning, set-up guy, I have no problem with that. But if a teams signs him to be their closer, all bets are off.”

And here is what I wrote about Lyon when the Detroit Tigers signed him to a contract last offseason:

“Bottom line: Brandon Lyon can’t close. There are certain pitchers who are made for the 8th inning and there are certain pitchers made for the 9th inning. Lyon falls into the category of 8th inning pitchers.  The proof is in the pudding.

All you need to do is look at Lyon in 05 and 08 when he was a closer….

Year    IP       H       K       SV       ERA       BAA

05: 29.1    44      17     14       6.44       .341

08: 59.1    75      44     26       4.70       .301

…..And when he was a set-up man in 06 and 07

Year IP      H       K      HLD      ERA      BAA

06: 69.1    68       46     23        3.89      .258

07: 74        70      40    35        2.68      .251

“Eric Karabell set the bar at over 30 saves for Lyon. I will take the under on that bet. Even if Lyon does win the closer job, the chances of him keeping it for the entire year are slim. If Lyon couldn’t close out games in the NL, what makes anyone think he can close in the AL?”

All bets are off now with Lyon and the Astros in 2010. He was signed to be their closer. Good luck with that.

I fully expect this to be a disaster and midway through the season Lyon will lose his job to the newly acquired Matt Lindstrom.

Lyon is just another bloated contract and a team full of them.

This is a bad signing by the Astros.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg