And Tonight’s Mighty Mouse Award Goes to…

The Burkelet.  Last week, Chris Burke subluxed his left shoulder (which means he dislocated it but it popped back in on its own) for theCaptc7ee8d7d0a7d45af9d11a9e717e74a8eastr_1 third time in the last twelve months (and the second time this season). Twenty-four hours later, after taking batting practice and fielding grounders, he declared himself available to pinch hit. Yes, this guy is tough. In Monday’s game against the Braves, he was drilled in the left elbow in the second inning by Horacio Ramirez, then stayed in the game until the fifth, leaving only after making a highlight reel catch on Tal’s Hill in deep centerfield at Minute Maid Park. Tonight, he launched a solo homer off Cubs rookie Sean Marshall in the first inning to put the Astros on the board, then proceeded to reach base in all four of his subsequent plate appearances; and each time he reached base, he came around to score, managing 5 runs on the evening. I’m afraid NL Rookie of the Year runner up Willy Taveras may have lost his starting job in centerfield, at least for the time being.

Andy Pettitte also looked great tonight, allowing just one run off five hits in seven innings and working himself out of some jams that were for the most part not of his own making.

Alright, off to bed, folks. On tap for tomorrow: Roy Oswalt, fresh off the 15-day DL says he’s feeling great and ready to go vs. Greg Maddux.

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7 comments

  1. Lisa

    Thomas, my fingers are crossed. He says he feels great and expects to have a good outing (but what else is he going to say, right?). I actually have plans tonight and won’t be able to watch it, or at least not all of it–so you’ll have to be my eyes and tell me how he looks (beyond the numbers).

  2. david.duez@gmail.com

    I am all for Chris Burke playing everyday. I don’t care where… just somewhere. Is there any doubt that he is better than Wily right now?

    Obviously they can’t give up on Wily T. Next year Biggio could be gone, Burke at second (where he belongs) and Wily will be back in CF.

  3. Lisa

    David,

    I’m with you… I actually was against the Preston Wilson acquisition in the offseason–I wanted Burke to get everyday time in LF. I love the way Burke plays, his enthusiasm, his energy, and his toughness, no matter what his position. It might be because he reminds me of a little Biggio.

    I have a feeling Biggio will stick around one more year, however–if he’s healthy I’m certain he’s going to push for 3,000 hits. I’m not exactly sure where that leaves Willy. Bruntlett plays a solid CF and has better instincts than Willy (although Willy has improved a lot since last season).

    Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Lisa

    Rafael,

    The thing about Willy is, at least in my opinion, that he doesn’t have naturally great baseball instincts. Defensively. Base-stealing. And as for offense, last season, he relied almost exclusively on his speed, on the infield single and the bunt single. This season, I think we’ve seen some positive signs that he’s attempting to evolve into a more versatile hitter (also, he’s been taking more pitches, walking a bit more, or at least it seems that way, I’ll have to check) and he’s been playing more solid defense as well. I have hopes for him that he will adapt.

    That being said, I don’t think it’s unfair that he’s sitting. I think it’s a rough situation and I feel badly for the guy. But when someone like Burke is on such a tear, you CAN’T justify not starting him just because Willy is the regular centerfielder and deserves a chance… I really like Willy. But Burke is playing too well right now.

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