A Blog devoted to all things SWC, the greatest college athletic conference. Updated weekly with the SWC Game of the Week during football season. Other relevant SWC News will appear from time to time as well.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

World Series

1984 I went to my first Astros game and we sat behind home plate. I remember the net in the Astrodome at the time didn't go straight up, it went back over your head. I was disappointed because I wanted to get a foul ball. I don't remember if the Astros won, I think they did, but there was an Oiler football game afterwards so we stayed and watched them change the field over for awhile. I remember looking at the roof and hoping for a homerun so I could see the scoreboard go off.

1985 I was an Astros Buddy for the first time and we went to the 6 Astro Buddy games in the Dome. Mostly we sat in the Upper Deck. I went with a friend once and came back with buttons and a wooden bat.

1986 was the first time Dad and I went to opening day. Will Clark hit a homerun off Nolan Ryan and a guy with an arm cast caught it in the outfield. The '86 team will always be special because they won the pennant. Of course we all know the Game 6 of the NLCS story, the only game that has made me cry. I was young though, and I honestly thought they would be right back in the hunt of things. Game 6 still haunts me. God Bless Glenn Davis, Bill Doran, Craig Reynolds, Phil Garner, Denny Walling, Jose Cruz, Billy Hatcher, Kevin Bass, Nolan Ryan, Mike Scott, Dave Smith, Charlie Kerfield, Bob Kneeper, Larry Anderson.

1987 - Mom utters after a little league game, "Don't worry Joel, even Jose Cruz stikes out."

1988 - the last year of Nolan Ryan as an Astro. I was so mad at our Yankee owner for letting my hero go to the ... Rangers?? Another note, a catcher made his major league debut, his name, Craig Biggio.

1989 - The Astros were in 1st place in August, but this was the last competitive team for awhile.

1991 - The Astros finished in last place this year and I must have gone to 15 games. We're in the bleachers now mostly, as I've out grown the Astros buddies. Lots of young guys on this team, Steve Finley, Luis Gonzalez, and a guy we got from Boston, Jeff Bagwell.

1992 - The Astros are on the road for a month to accomodate the Republican Convention in the Dome. The team responds well and finish strong. My friend Brad and I try to raise money to buy the Astros by standing on the street corner with a sign that says, "Help us buy the Astros" and a bucket. We get enough for 2 slurpees and 2 candy bars.

1993 - The Astros finish ahead of the Cubs winning a $5 bet I made with a friend at the beginning of the season. Dad and I see Darrlye Kile's 1st career no hitter. I also set the record for eating 6 $1 hotdogs.

1994 - Sad season, no World Series as the Astros were on their way to a division title. Will we be back in this position again?

1997 - For the first time since 1986 the Astros are back in the playoffs. They aren't the best team, but making it to the playoffs is good enough. I remember Dad calling me at college after the clinching game.

1998 - Astros make deadline deal for Randy Johnson and win 100 games. The best Astros team? They fall to the Padres in the divisional series. I went to the first game the Big Unit pitched in the Dome and that place was rocking. He looks terrible as a batter.

1999 - The last year of the 'Dome. Astros again face playoff disappointment.

2000 - Enron Field is awesome. The Astros aren't.

2001 - I met my wife and took her to her first Astros game. She realizes that she must embrace this Astros obsession if this is going to work.

2004 - I miss the first Opening Day with Dad since 1986 because of my move to New York. The Astros are back in the playoffs again as the wildcard for the first time since 2001. The beat the Braves in the divisional round for the first playoff series win for the franchise. The go back to St. Louis with a 3-2 lead in the NLCS only to lose the next two games.

2005 - WORLD SERIES!!!

Tonight I finally get to see my team in the World Series, a moment I thought would never happen. I love it. I love this team.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


I'd cry, but when you get punched in the stomach you don't have the breath to cry. This is about as hard as I've taken any loss, ever. That and I get to work and have a Yankee fan tell me he understands losing because when he was growing up in the 80's the Yankees were below .500. I tried to explain that rooting for a team with rainbow uniforms that have never made the World Series and a team with (at the time) 22 World Series Championships is a bit different. Plus the Yankees have won 4 since.

But we've got Roy O going on Wed. and if any team in the world can come back, it's this one. But that is about as close as you can get and not make it.

I just want them to make it to the World Series, if they win, that would just be gravy. I just want to see them play in the Series, once.

Sunday, October 02, 2005


So the Astros beat the Cubs today and won the National League Wild Card for the second straight year. They will play the Braves in the NLDS starting on Wednesday. It was a big win for the Bubba Household. Now that we can relax for a few days and breath, lets revisit the biggest transacation of the Astros offseason, i.e. Carlos Beltran signing with the NY Mets instead of the Houston Astros.

Beltran: Salary-$11.5 million, Avg-.266, HR-16, RBI-78, SB-17, SLG-.414, OBP-.330, OPS-.744

Now the Astros who played the outfield for the Astros this year, Jason Lane, RF and Willie Taveras, CF.

Lane: Salary-$345 thousand, Avg-.267, HR-26, RBI-78, SB-6, SLG-.499, OBP-.316, OPS-.805

Taveras: Salary-$316 thousand, Avg-.291, HR-3, RBI-29, SB-34, SLG-.341, OBP-.325, OPS-.665

You do the math.