Clemens set to throw live batting practice

As the Astros hit the field for the fourth day of full-squad workouts, Roger Clemens held court with the media once again and covered a wide range of topics, from his work with the Astros to his family to boots. Yes, boots.

Clemens showed up wearing jeans and a pair of Columbia blue cowboys boots he got in a goody bag for participating in the 1986 All-Star Game in the Astrodome. Clemens was the game’s Most Valuable Player by throwing three perfect innings. He said the boots, which paid homage to the Luv Ya Blue Houston Oilers, have been resoled three times.

“I’ve hung onto them,” Clemens said. “They’re comfortable, and the rodeo is going so I have to break them out.”

0219-pre 003One of the more interesting things Clemens said was some pitchers who have yet to sign have reached out to him and asked him about preparing without the benefit of Spring Training. Clemens, of course, joined the Astros in midseason in 2006 and did it again with the Yankees in 2007. Clemens wouldn’t name which players have contact him, though he laughed when the name of former teammate Roy Oswalt was brought up.

“Some of the guys that are laying out for a month or two and trying to make a comeback, it’s difficult,” he said. “They don’t realize it’s difficult until they tried. I had to do three times the work behind the scenes. Thank goodness I had a mound at my house and the work I had to go. I wasn’t at home just sitting around once I gave my word I’d come back and play for you. Some people are calling me now that are trying to do it and they see how hard it is.”

Clemens did say he might throw batting practice to the hitters on Wednesday, his final day in camp of this trip.”

“I enjoy throwing what I call ‘room service’ to them,” he said.

In other news this morning

  • Astros manager Bo Porter said he expects to ask to use the designed hitter when visiting National League parks during Grapefruit League play for about half the exhibition schedule. The Astros will use the DH at home for every game at Osceola County Stadium and will have to have pitchers later in places like Clearwater, Fla. (Phillies), Viera, Fla. (Nationals) and Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Braves) later in camp.

Here are some morning pictures:

0219-pre 007

Bo Porter is animated as always.

0219-pre 008

Bo Porter and former Astros interim manager Tony DeFrancesco.

John Ely and Brett Obertholtzer play catch.

Bullpen assistant Javier Bracamonte hard at work as always.

Doug Brocail works with the pitchers.

Doug Brocail works with the pitchers.

John Ely plays catch with Brett Oberholtzer.

John Ely plays catch with Brett Oberholtzer.

1 Comment


Brian, looks like a Lot of work going on, with some wild stories told !!!           Ralph


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