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OOTP 20 - Historical Simulations Discuss historical simulations and their results in this forum.

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Old 04-11-2019, 08:12 PM   #1
gskweres9
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Join Date: May 2015
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Replaying 2007 and Beyond

Who can remember 2007? It was so long ago.

I'm only halfway kidding.

Believe it or not, 2007 was 12 years ago. Only college students were allowed on Facebook, Twitter was in it's infancy, Snapchat and Instagram hadn't been invented yet. George W. Bush was still president, the Great Recession hadn't hit yet. The Mitchell Report hadn't yet been released.

The world has changed to say the least.

As for me? I've changed quite a bit in 12 years. 12 years ago I was nine years-old growing up in Houston, Texas. My summers were filled with wiffle ball in the front yard, swimming, and Sportscenter.

2007 was an interesting time for the Houston Astros. Andy Pettitte and Roger Clemens went back to the Yankees in free agency, Craig Biggio announced the year would be his last. It was the beginning of the changing of the guard for a franchise that had been good for quite a while.

I remember bits and pieces of the 2003 season, but 2004 is the first season I remember vividly. The Rocket and Pettitte joined Roy Oswalt in the rotation that year, and midseason acquisition Carlos Beltran won the hearts of Astros fans with his miraculous performances. In 2004 and 2005, my dad's company not only had seats, but he controlled the tickets. Any time Roger Clemens was on the mound, we were there. "That's the greatest pitcher ever," he'd tell me every time.

Unfortunately, all those great names never brought a ring to Houston, and Jeff Bagwell and Biggio retired ringless. In this sim, we'll do our best to get Biggio a ring in his final season as he chases 3,000. Now, the Astros finished 73-89 that year, but the talent was there to do better. We'll get into that in a later post.

In the meantime, 2007 was a fun year to follow in the world of baseball. Biggio reached 3,000 hits, Barry Bonds passed Hank Aaron, Frank Thomas blasted his 500th homer, and Tom Glavine won his 300th game. There were lots of milestones to track, and I'll sure be tracking the progress of those guys in this sim.

Next, the 2007 Astros Opening Day roster.
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Old 04-11-2019, 08:47 PM   #2
gskweres9
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The 2007 Astros would begin the year looking like this

CATCHER

Brad Ausmus - The 37-year-old Ausmus is coming off a Gold Glove year in 2006. He's a reliable glove but has a questionable bat. At the end of the day, I'm happy to have him back there.

Humberto Quintero - The 27 year-old Quintero will be splitting duties behind the dish with Ausmus. 2007 will be his first year as a full time big leaguer. He got cups of coffee with the Astros the past two seasons, but spent a majority of each year in AAA Round Rock. Like Ausmus, he's solid defensively but has a questionable bat.

FIRST BASE

Lance Berkman - Barring injury, the four-time All-Star will play every day at first base. Now 31 years-old, he's on the back nine of his career, but he's a legitimate offensive threat, and he'll feature prominently in the Astros order.

SECOND BASE

Craig Biggio - The face of the franchise and future Hall of Famer will play every day at second base as he chases 3,000 hits in his final season.

Mark Loretta - Loretta was signed in the offseason to be a veteran presence off the bench and fill in where needed. I figure he'll do that well.

THIRD BASE

Morgan Ensberg - Ensberg is now two years removed from his magical 2005 season, where he won the NL Silver Slugger at third base. He has the ability to blast 30+ homers, especially in Minute Maid Park, but there's a lot of swing-and-miss in his game too.

Mike Lamb - If the swing-and-miss appears too often, Mike Lamb could overtake Ensberg as the starting third baseman. Lamb is a reliable bat that has always performed well when the Astros have given him opportunity. Lamb can also fill in at first base.

SHORTSTOP

Adam Everett - Now 30, it is clear the slick-fielding Everett will never figure things out at the plate. It's unfortunate, because he's a gold glove caliber shortstop.

Eric Bruntlett - Bruntlett was a super-utility before those were cool. He's as average player at best, but he'll feature all over the diamond due to his versatility

LEFT FIELD

Carlos Lee - The Astros handed out the first $100M deal in franchise history, signing Lee to a six-year pact in the offseason. Houston hopes "El Caballo" and Berkman will be a dangerous middle of the order.

CENTER FIELD

Chris Burke - The hero of the 2005 NLDS gets the nod in the early going in center field, but the top prospect in the system is breathing down his neck...

RIGHT FIELD

Luke Scott - Right Field will be a true platoon, as the left-handed hitting Scott will start versus righties. The 28-year-old player well in limited opportunities the year prior, and the team hopes that will continue with added responsibility.

Jason Lane - The right-handed hitting Lane will start versus lefties. Lane performed poorly in 2006 after a career year in 2005, and if he doesn't figure out what plagued him a year prior, he could keep losing at-bats to Luke Scott.

ROTATION

Roy Oswalt - With Clemens and Pettitte gone, Oswalt is now the clear-cut Ace of the staff. Oswalt followed up consecutive 20-win seasons in '04 and '05 with a 15 win, 2.98 ERA season in '06.

Jason Jennings - The Astros traded away fan-favorite Willy Taveras to acquire Jennings from the Colorado Rockies in the offseason. The former 2002 NL RoY looked to regain his rookie form in 2006, pitching 212.0 innings with a 3.78 in daunting Coors Field.

Wandy Rodriguez - The 28-year-old Rodriguez has gotten off to a rocky start to his career, but the stuff is there to be a more than reliable big leaguer. Is 2007 the year he puts it all together?

Woody Williams - The Astros signed the 40-year-old Williams in the offseason after an impressive campaign with San Diego. Can he continue to resist father time?

Chris Sampson - The local Houston product debuted in 2006, pitching 34.0 IP to the tune of a 2.12 ERA, good enough to get him the nod in the rotation to begin the year.

BULLPEN

Brad Lidge
Dan Wheeler
Chad Qualls
Travis Driskill
Dave Borkowski
Trever Miller
Brian Moehler

Lidge has back of the bullpen stuff, but he had a horrid season in 2006 after a postseason that included giving up an absolute moonshot to Albert Pujols in 2005. The Astros hope he can regain his pre-Pujols form, but he could be on the way out if he doesn't. Wheeler and Qualls are both reliable arms, and the rest of the guys should do a good enough job of limiting damage and eating innings.

MANAGER

Phil Garner - Who doesn't love Phil

FARM REPORT

Ranking: 28th

Top Prospects: Hunter Pence, Bud Norris, Fernando Abad, Chris Johnson, J.R. Towles

Things are bleak down there...

On to the Pittsburgh Pirates and the beginning of the 2007 season next.
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