My beloved Houston Astros are five years removed from their lone World Series appearance, and, in those five years, the team has fallen on hard times. For fans of a team that was once respected for its professionalism and hard-nosed play, it's been painful to watch. There are signs though that that era and our frustration may be coming to an end.
This week, the Astros traded their last two ties to their winning era, Roy Oswalt and Lance Berkman. In return, they got some young and very promising players. All of a sudden, this formerly old team has gotten a lot younger. They have rookies or very young players at nearly all positions. These kids bring their enthusiasm and excitement with them to the game and that is very exciting to their fans. Suddenly, their games are fun to watch again.
I know that they have a lot of learning to do and there will probably be some rough spots in the road ahead. Well, the Astros' road this year, as well as last year, has been mostly one of rough spots so that won't be anything new, but with these kids, we at least have the hope that they can get better and some of them may actually be quite special.
Chris Johnson, their rookie third baseman, looks like he might just about have things figured out, and the rookie catcher, Jason Castro, though he hasn't had much luck in the batter's box, has been very, very good behind home plate. In time, he might even make me forget Brad Ausmus. In tonight's game, their rookie first baseman started his first major league game. He looks like a baby, but I can actually remember when Jeff Bagwell looked like a baby, and look how well that turned out!
The guys are swinging the bats aggressively again and they look like they are having fun. I can see their confidence growing. Yes, I really believe that these kids are all right.