Results tagged ‘ pictures ’

Photos from Comerica Park

Road series photos are back:

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J.D. Martinez talks with Miggy Cabrera

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Brad Ausmus throws BP

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Two great baseball men: Gene Lamont and Dave Trembley

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Miggy Cabrera jokes with Astros

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Ausmus talks to Geoff Blum and Alan Ashby

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Victor Martinez greets Jesus Guzman

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George Springer dances

Game 15: Tigers jump all over Harrell, Astros

The fact:  The Tigers pounded out 18 hits, jumping on Astros starter Lucas Harrell for 10 runs in the first two innings, to beat Houston, 14-3, on Saturday in Lakeland, Fla. (boxscore).

What we learned: RHP Lucas Harrell still has some work to do. Harrell found himself in trouble from the get-go and wound up allowing 12 hits and 10 runs (nine earned) in 1 2/3 innings. The Tigers definitely hit some balls hard — Ian Kinsler hit the first of his two homers off Harrell — but he did give up some weak contact for hits and didn’t have a few plays made behind him.

“Sometimes things go your way when you’re getting ground balls, and sometimes it doesn’t,” Harrell said. “Just one of those things today even though I was making pitches, sometimes you have tip your cap. They made better hits.”

Here’s more on Harrell.

Player of the game: LF Robbie Grossman. He went 2-for-3 and socked his first homer of the spring in the fourth inning, coming against 2013 AL Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer. Grossman is hitting .417 this spring.

What went wrong: Harrell certainly didn’t have his best stuff, putting the Astros in a 10-1 hole after two innings. … Tigers 2B Ian Kinsler homered off Harrell and RHP Chad Qualls, and Tigers CF Tyler Collins had a single, triple and a homer, which came against RHP Josh Zeid. … RHP Peter Moylan walked the first two hitters he faced and wound up giving up a run on a sac fly.

Notable: IF Marwin Gonzalez kept his strong spring going by hitting a double off the wall in his only at-bat. He’s hitting .481. … Jesus Guzman started at third and was charged with an error. He also couldn’t handle a pair of grounders in the first inning that went for hits, but perhaps could have been played into outs.

Quotable: “They put some good swings on the ball, throughout the course of the day, not just in the first couple of innings,” — Astros manager Bo Porter.

Up next: Right-hander Brad Peacock makes his second start of the spring when the Astros return home to face the split-squad Nationals at 12:05 p.m. CT Saturday in Kissimmee, Fla. Peacock, who was roughed up for five earned runs and four hits in one inning of work in his only spring start March 1 against the Tigers in Lakeland, needs a strong outing to bolster his candidacy to break camp with a spot in the starting rotation. He’s pitched in a pair of Minor League games since his last Grapefruit League start.

Injuries: RHP Mark Appel (recovering from appendectomy), RHP Asher Wojciechowski (lat strain), RHP Jesse Crain (biceps tendon surgery recovery).

Links of the day:

Marwin Gonzalez has put himself in good spot to make the team

Peter Moylan knows spring work isn’t yet done

GM Jeff Luhnow sees Rodon on scouting trip

Mark Appel could see game action in a week

Tweets of the day:

Pictures of the day:

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George Springer signs for a fan

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Jim Leyland, Brad Ausmus and Chad Qualls

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Robert Ford interviews Gregario Petit

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Matt Albers and Peter Moylan

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L.J. Hoes fools around with George Springer

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L.J. Hoes, Jon Singleton

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Darin Downs visits with former manager Jim Leyland

Game 8: Long day against the Yankees

The fact: The split-squad Astros banged out 12 hits and committed three errors in a 9-6 loss to the Yankees on Saturday afternoon at Osceola County Stadium (boxscore).

Meanwhile, in Clearwater, the other Astros team lost, 11-3, to the Phillies (boxscore). That was despite LHP Dallas Keuchel throwing three hitless innings. But more on the game in Kissimmee…

What we learned: RHP Jarred Cosart’s focus on Saturday was his curveball, which is why he wasn’t too worried about the results, giving up two hits and two runs (one earned) in 1 2/3 innings of work.

Cosart said he’s been working with pitching coach Brent Strom on establishing his curveball the last few days because he thinks it could get hitters off his fastball if he can throw more strikes. He threw75 percent strikes with his curveball in the first inning and 65 percent in the second inning.

“Brent told me if I can do that throughout the year, I’m going to have a lot of success,” Cosart said. “They’re really not worried about the fastball as much right now because they think it’s going to be there, and I do, too. But at the same time, I’ve still got to throw more strikes.

Player of the game: DH Chris Carter. The big guy slugged his first home run of the spring, clubbing a three-run shot in the fifth inning that gave the Astros a 6-4 lead they couldn’t keep. Carter has been working on hitting more line drives this offseason.

“It’s just good to show that everything you worked on in and everything you worked on since you been here is coming together,” said Carter, who led the club with 29 homers last year. “I think I’m going to have a better this year with everything and be an all-around hitter.

What went wrong: The Astros were sloppy on defense. CF Dexter Fowler’s throw to the infield rolled into the dugout, allowing two runs to score. 2B Jose Altuve committed an error in the second that led to a run, and 1B Telvin Nash — a Minor Leaguer — mysteriously threw home when he had a shot at an inning-ending double play. SS Jonathan Villar also made his third error of the spring. … RHP Jose Cisnero, LHP Darin Downs and RHP Jake Buchanan each had rough days on the mound.

Notable: CF Dexter Fowler, 2B Jose Altuve and C Jason Castro, the top three hitters in the Astros lineup, went a combined combined 4-for-9. For Castro, it was his first hit of the spring after starting 0-for-10. … 3B-2B Cesar Izturis went 2-for-3 and could be a solid addition if he makes the club. … 1B Marc Krauss went 1-for-2 and is hitting .529 (9-for-17).

Quotable: “There was some fundamental things we need to get cleaned up, but I’ll you, I thought we swung the bat well. Altuve and Dexter swung the bat well early in the game and Carter with the big three-run homer. Krauss continues to swing the bat well. We did have a couple of fundamental things that led to a couple of extra outs for the other teams, and we’ll get those things cleaned up,” — Astros manager Bo Porter.

Up next: Left-hander Rudy Owens, who was roughed up in his first career Major League Spring Training start earlier this week, will get the ball for the Astros when they face the Blue Jays at 12:05 p.m. CT Sunday at Osceola County Stadium. Anthony Bass, Raul Valdes, Matt Albers and Kevin Chapman are also scheduled to throw.

Injuries: RHP Mark Appel (recovering from appendectomy), RHP Asher Wojciechowski (lat strain), RHP Jesse Crain (biceps tendon surgery recovery).

Links of the day:

Porter unsuccessful in his first challenge of the spring

Jack Armstrong Jr., no longer a pitcher, trying his hand at first base

Tweets of the day:

Pictures of the day:

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Dexter Fowler gives Lucas Harrell a visual aid

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Harrell and Fowler help each other

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George Springer

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Springer follows through

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Correa follows through

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Correa

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Correa talks to Geoff Blum, Jim Crane

Game 3: Solid day on mound for starting candidates

What happened: The Astros beat the Braves, 7-4, on Sunday in their first home game of the Grapefruit League season at Osceola County Stadium (boxscore).

What we learned: The work LHP Brett Oberholtzer has been doing with his curveball is giving him confidence to be a solid pitch in his repertoire, instead of just a third pitch. He wants to use it as a weapon to left-handers, but his fastball command will also set everything up. He threw two innings in relief Sunday and gave up three hits and one run.

What we learned II: RHP Jarred Cosart’s adjustments are playing off as well. Cosart breezed through two scorless innings against the Braves, and said holding his hands lower prior to his windup has allowed him to get more angle on some of his pitches. It’s a subtle move, but one that could pay huge dividends.

What else: The Astros had nine hits, four of which went for extra bases. RF Marc Krauss and 1B Chris Carter doubled, and 3B Matt Dominguez and 2B Ronald Torreyes had triples. … C Carlos Corporan drove in a run with a hit and a sacrifice fly. … RHP Anthony Bass continues to impress, throwing another scoreless inning. … The Astros drew two walks with the bases loaded in the eighth inning — RF L.J. Hoes and Torreyes. … CF Dexter Fowler had an outfield assist in the fifth by getting Jordan Schafer trying to stretch a double into a triple. … RHP Jerome Williams threw two scoreless innings.

“I was really pleased with the tempo of the game,” manager Bo Porter said. “I felt like guys went out there today and threw strikes and kept the defense on their toes.”

What went wrong: The Astros were 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position. … RHP Chad Qualls got on the mound for the first time and gave up two hits and three runs in one inning.

What they said: “The other guys think, ‘I’m not going to walk this guy. I’m going to throw him a good fastball and hopefully he’ll hit it to somebody,’ but the little man can hit,” Astros manager Bo Porter on 5-foot-9 infielder Ronald Torreyes.

What’s next: Left-hander Dallas Keuchel makes his first start of the spring on Monday afternoon when the Astros travel to Jupiter, Fla., to face the Miami Marlins at 12:05 p.m. CT. Keuchel is battling for a rotation spot, having gone 6-10 with a 5.15 ERA in 31 games (22 starts) last year.

Who’s injured: RHP Mark Appel (recovering from appendectomy), RHP Asher Wojciechowski (lat strain), RHP Jesse Crain (calf strain/biceps tendon surgery recovery), OF Adron Chambers (hamstring strain), RHP Jorge De Leon (quad strain), LHP Raul Valdes (left knee surgery recovery).

Links of the day:

Tweet of the day:

The day in photos

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Cesar Izturis and Jose Altuve play catch

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Chris Carter

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Bo Porter

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Justin Upton and Dexter Fowler

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Fredi Gonzalez, Bo Porter and Justin Upton

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Jonathan Singleton

Day 10: Astros have a little fun with hitting drill

In an effort to ramp up the intensity while promoting some camaraderie, Astros position players ended their workout Tuesday with a hitting competition that pitted a team picked by Jason Castro against a team picked by Brett Wallace.

The teams took turns batting against a pitching machine while trying to execute in different situations – squeeze bunts, man on third and one out, etc. – with manager Bo Porter standing  behind a net and playing umpire, determining whether the batted ball would have done the job in real life.

Each team was awarded points for proper execution, and Wallace’s team won the competition on a walk-off homer run by catcher Rene Garcia.

“I thought it was great,” Porter said. “Those guys started ragging each other a little bit. It’s always good to add a little fun to Spring Training, but at the same time you keep it intense and competitive, and I felt the guys did a great job.”

The losing team had to pick up more than 500 baseballs that were scattered around the outfield and the bullpens, while the winning team headed to the clubhouse.

“We’ve been working on a lot of those situations,” Wallace said. “It’s been a big focus for us this whole camp for everybody. Not only was it like competing against yourself, the guys in your group, but you’re putting the whole team in a real competitive situations.

“It’s the closest we’re going to get to a game right now. Any time you’re out on the field in a separate dugout competing against each other, it’s going to make it more real.

Garcia proved to be an unlikely hero.

“He called it, too,” Wallace said. “After everybody went through [and hit], you could pick who you wanted to go up. I went a couple of times and some other guys went up, and Rene was like, ‘I got it, I want to go.’ He called it and requested it and went up there and delivered. It’s pretty neat he did that.”

Check out these links:

Feature story and video: J.D. Martinez has revamped his swing from head to toe…literally.

Asher Wojciechowski not rushing back from injury.

Hitting competition light-hearted fun for Astros.

Update on Jesse Crain status.

Altuve, Izturis and Corporan give advice to Latin players.

Scouting season is heating up, says scouting director Mike Elias.

Here is the day in pictures:

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Carlos Perez

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Lucas Harrell

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Nick Tropeano

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Josh Fields

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Jerome Williams

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Cesar Izturis and Jose Altuve

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Dallas Keuchel

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Cesar Izturis

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Field filled with balls awaiting loser of hitting drill

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Jonathan Singleton

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Bo Porter and staff and players watch hitting competition

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Carlos Correa holds a young fan

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Astros mob Rene Garcia after his walk-off homer

Day 6: Feldman among those throwing to hitters

The goal for Astros pitcher Scott Feldman was to simply not hit anybody. Feldman and a handful of other pitchers faced live hitters for the first time Friday, throwing for about 15 minutes on the back fields against teammates.

“You’re just getting reacquainted with the mound and seeing hitters out there and trying to get all my pitches over and work with the catchers a little bit,” Feldman said. “Trying not to hit anybody is probably the most important thing.”

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Feldman throws to hitters

In years past, hitters would typically stand in the box during the first days of live batting practice and simply track the pitches with their eyes. The Astros this year gave hitters certain in-game scenarios to focus on when they stepped into the box.

“Throughout the years, it’s been called pitching practice, and the hitters would get in there and see their five pitches and get out,” manager Bo Porter said. “It’s something as a staff we talked about and wanted to try to get a little bit more out of that situation, so our hitting coaches put together a program that put these guys into situations and counts to intensify it for the hitter.”

Porter says it allows the hitters to sharpen their mind while the pitchers get their work in, as well.

“You train yourself from a mental standpoint of executing that situation,” he said.

Here’s the day in pictures:

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Dave Trembley and Adam Everett

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Bullpen coach Craig Bjornson sounds the horn

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Cesar Izturis

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Bench coach Dave Trembley talks to pitchers

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Adam Everett works with Matt Dominguez

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Matt Albers and Peter Moylan

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Marc Krauss

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Astros work on rundowns

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Tony DeFrancesco hits grounders

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More rundowns

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Doug Brocail and J.D. Martinez

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Rene Garcia

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Dave Trembley and Bo Porter talk

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John Mallee talks to hitters

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Chia-Jen Lo does an interview

Day 2: Youth is served at Astros camp

As positions players continue to trickle in to Astros camp, the club welcomed former No. 1 overall Draft pick Carlos Correa into the fold on Monday. Correa showed up two days ahead of the reporting date for position players and took batting practice with a large group of players.

“It feels great,” Correa said. “It’s a whole new experience for me, being out here with these kinds of players in big league camp. It’s a really good experience for me, something unbelievable.”

Correa joins fellow former No. 1 overall pick – pitcher Mark Appel, who was taken with the top stop last year – and top prospects George Springer and Mike Foltynewicz in camp this year. It’s the first Major League camp for all but Springer.

“They get an opportunity to participate in Major League Spring Training and get around Major League players that have experience, who have been productive at this level,” manager Bo Porter said. “I actually think it can only speed up their learning curve to be around veteran guys who have done the job in which one day they aspire to do.”

Among the other position players showing up at camp Monday were outfielder L.J. Hoes and designated hitter Chris Carter.

Check out Astros.com later today for more information on these items:

  • RHP Alex White threw his third session of live batting practice since undergoing Tommy John surgery nearly a year.
  • RHP Jesse Crain gave an update on where stands following biceps tendon surgery in October.
  • OF Delino DeShields was all smiles Monday, one day after his younger sister, Diamond, scored 38 points for the University of North Carolina in a win over North Carolina State.

Now the day in pictures:

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Dallas Keuchel

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Pitching coach Brent Strom watches Peter Moylan

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Brett Oberholtzer

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Carlos Correa

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Bo Porter signs autographs

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Alex White throws live BP

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Carlos Correa

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Jose Altuve

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Brett Wallace

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1B coach Tarrik Brock and Dexter Fowler

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George Springer

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Carlos Correa

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Bo Porter jokes with George Springer

 

Day 1: Porter gets first look at pitchers

We wait all winter for Spring Training, and the first day of workouts is usually anti-climatic. That can be good news considering it means no one got injured and everyone showed up on time, so the fact there was no news coming off the back fields at Osceola Country Stadium on Sunday was definitely good news for the Astros.

Three groups of pitchers got on the mound for the first time, including Scott Feldman, Brad Peacock and Chad Qualls, while all the pitchers worked on fielding practice. Meanwhile, position players who have reported early — a group that’s approaching 20 — hit in the cages and then took batting practice on the back fields. That included newcomer Dexter Fowler, who showed up at camp Sunday to meet his new team.

“This is a time where we have several new guys in camp and I wanted to try to place eyes on as many of the new guys as possible,” said Astros manager Bo Porter, who wandered around the fields. “When you look at the groups, they’re split up to a point where it allows me the opportunity to rove and get to see some bullpens in certain groups and get to see PFP [pitcher fielding practice] in some of the other groups.”

Porter stressed to the pitchers earlier in the day to not try to do too much on the first day. No one is going to make the club throwing in the bullpen.

“The last thing you want is a guy to come out here and try to impress and end up blowing out in the bullpen and not even in a game where the competition is taking place,” Porter said. “I thought the guys did a good job of being as crisp as you could without being 100 percent as far as effort goes, as far as letting the ball go. That’s what you want in your first bullpen session.”

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Scott Feldman in bullpen

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Brad Peacock in bullpen

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Bo Porter models a new look

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Jason Stoffel fires one high

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J.D. Martinez signs autographs

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Bobby Doran works on fielding

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Paul Clemens throws to first

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Dallas Keuchel fields a comebacker

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Delino DeShields Jr. signs autographs

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Jose Altuve takes BP for first time

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Dexter Fowler takes BP from left side

 

Astros pictures from Cleveland

Here are a few photos from the Astros’ stay in Cleveland:

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Doug Brocail, Dallas Keuchel and Jarred Cosart catch up with Brad Mills

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Doug Brocail looks like a natural QB

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Jarred Cosart throws a football

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Brad Mills, Terry Francona and Geoff Blum

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Rhiner Cruz, Robbie Grossman and Josh Fields await BP

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Brandon Barnes stays hydrated

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J.D. Martinez interviewed by Julia Morales

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The dugout just prior to stretch

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Carlos Corporan

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Michael Bourn catches up with old friends

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David Martinez, Jorge De Leon, Marwin Gonzalez and Carlos Corporan

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Jose Altuve

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Michael Bourn and former teammates

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Progressive Field

Game 25: Astros club 4 homers to back pitching

What happened: The Astros slugged four homers, including two by backup catcher Carlos Corporan, and got solid pitching from Lucas Harrell, Hector Ambriz and Brad Peacock to beat the Tigers, 7-2, on Thursday night at Joker Marchant Stadium (boxscore).

What we learned: C Carlos Corporan is feeling as good as he has all spring at the plate, and he might even be swinging the best bat of his career. The switch-hitting backup backstop blasted two homers — one off Justin Verlander and the other off Al Albuquerque.

“You can mature in the game and you get to know your swing and you learn,” Corporan said. “You can learn what the pitcher is trying to do. My swing has always been there and now I have more experience and figured out what they’re trying to do to me. I feel more mature.”

What we learned II: The Astros are going to have a tough decision to make when it comes to deciding the final two spots in the rotation. The club’s off-season mission of adding starting pitching depth worked, and with a week to go in camp, RHPs Brad Peacock, Alex White and Edgar Gonzalez and LHP Erik Bedard are all pitching well down the wire. Peacock worked three scoreless innings in relief Thursday.

“I felt good,” he said. “I was getting in better counts and I threw strikes. That’s all I wanted to accomplish, and that’s what I did. I threw good tonight, and hopefully I opened some eyes.”

What else: IF Brandon Laird was thrown into the game when Brett Wallace left with a pinched nerve in his neck, and he smacked his fifth homer of the spring to tie C Jason Castro for the team lead. … 3B Matt Dominguez continues to swing a good bat this spring, going 2-for-4 with a homer to improve his batting average to .314. … The Astros turned double plays in the second and sixth innings. … RF Rick Ankiel showed off his arm, throwing out a runner at third base in the fifth inning. … The Astros didn’t make an error.

What went wrong: Other than Wallace leaving with a mild injury, it was a near flawless night for the Astros.

What they said: “We don’t have a good team on paper, but on talent I think we have a really, really good team. We have a lot of people who can change the game with one swing. That’s going to be my goal this year, trying to keep it two or three runs per game and I know someone is going to turn on one. That’s the big difference between this year and last year.” — Astros backup C Carlos Corporan.

What’s next: RHP Bud Norris, who was named as the club’s Opening Day starter on Wednesday, gets the start for the Astros when they face the Cardinals at 12:05 p.m. Friday at Osceola County Stadium. RHP Jose Veras, who just helped the Dominican Republic win the World Baseball Classic, is scheduled to get back on the mound for the Astros for the first time since March 1.

Who’s injured: OF Fernando Martinez (lower back strain) is day-to-day. … 1B Brett Wallace (pinched nerve in neck/upper back) is day-to-day. … RHP Edgar Gonzalez (bruised shin) took a liner off his shin during a Triple-A game on Thursday and is day-to-day.

Tweet of the day:

Links of the day:

The day in photos:

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Steve Sparks shows off his grip to Tony DeFrancesco, perhaps campaigning to eat up some innings this year in Oklahoma City

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Bo Porter throws BP

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Rick Ankiel makes good contact. Good form, too

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Justin Maxwell, John Mallee and Chris Carter

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Baseball flying towards Jose Altuve

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