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 Round Rock Express

Brett Anderson Schedule To Make Rehab Apperance

May 24, 2010 - Pacific Coast League (PCL1)
Round Rock Express News Release


ROUND ROCK, Texas - Jason Bourgeois tripled to left-center with one out in the bottom of the ninth, scoring Collin DeLome from first base and giving the Round Rock Express a 5-4 victory over the Reno Aces in Sunday's series finale at The Dell Diamond. The Express (19-24) snapped a four-game losing streak in one-run games and salvaged a split in the series against the Aces (21-23) with the win.

DeLome bounced a seeing-eye single through the right side with one out in the ninth. Bourgeois followed with a deep fly to left-center that bounced at the base of the wall just out of the reach of Reno center fielder Cole Gillespie. DeLome and the ball reached home at virtually the same time, but DeLome bowled Aces catcher Carlos Corporan; the ball rolled free, and DeLome slapped home plate with his right hand for the win.

Round Rock earned its first victory in a series finale this season, snapping a 10-game skid in such games. The Express have not lost a series since dropping three-of-four April 29 through May 2 at Albuquerque, winning two series and splitting three in that time.

Yorman Bazardo (1-0) earned the victory in relief for the Express; he allowed one hit in a scoreless inning of work with one strikeout. Tim Byrdak, on a rehab assignment, allowed a run on one hit and a walk in the first inning. Andy Van Hekken took over from there and allowed three runs, two earned, on seven hits and no walks with five strikeouts over 7.0 innings.

Luis Ayala (1-4) took the loss for the Aces in relief after entering the game to start the ninth. Starter Kevin Mulvey worked 5.1 innings allowed four runs on seven hits and a walk with one strikeout. Jose Marte tossed 2.2 scoreless innings of relief, scattering a hit and striking out three.

Gillespie's first-inning sacrifice fly gave Reno the game's first lead, but Matt Kata's two-run double in the bottom of the inning erased the deficit and gave the Express a 2-1 lead. Reno tied the game in the top of the second on Corporan's two-out solo homer, only to see the Express recapture the lead on Kata's RBI single in the bottom of the third.

Round Rock held on to that 3-2 lead until the sixth. Gillespie reached on an error to open the frame, and Ryan Roberts followed with a two-run homer to give the Aces a 4-3 lead. Once again, the Express quickly answered. Brian Bogusevic singled to start the bottom of the sixth and later scored on Brian Esposito's RBI single.

Kata finished 2-for-4 with three RBI, all of which came with two outs. He extended his hitting streak to 11 games, the longest by an Express player this season. Kata has 10 multiple-hit games in that time, including each of the last five games to match his own team-best multiple-hit-games streak this season. Bourgeois was 2-for-5 with a stolen base, while Chris Johnson was 1-for-4 with two runs scored to extend his hitting streak to eight games.

Roberts, Doug Deeds and Ed Rogers all had two-hit games for the Aces.

Round Rock continues its third home stand of the season Monday, starting a four-game series against the Las Vegas 51s (Toronto Blue Jays). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. CDT at The Dell Diamond. Southpaw Wesley Wright (2-0, 4.20 ERA) is scheduled to start for the Express, while right-hander Marty McLeary (0-2, 9.00 ERA) is slated to start for the 51s.

***

DeLome Barrels Express to 5-4 Ninth Inning Win Express improve record to 6-12 in one-run games

By Ryan Metz

ROUND ROCK, Texas - Collin DeLome thought that he had a leisurely next couple of days. On Sunday afternoon he was supposed to have the day off and on Monday he had an early morning tee time to shoot a round of golf.

After a his dramatic bottom of the ninth inning, bowling over the catcher score that sealed the Round Rock Express' 5-4 win over the Reno Aces, he isn't going to have to worry about his golf game and his only thoughts are how sore his left shoulder is going to be when he wakes up Monday morning.

"It's a good sore," said DeLome, with an ice pack slung on his left shoulder. "It was exciting to get the walk-off win and blow up the catcher at the same time. I've done it a few times and that's the first time I've ever been safe."

DeLome raced home after Jason Bourgeois' one-out RBI triple that hit the left-center wall. After the relay-throw and DeLome reached home at the same time, he led with left shoulder knocking over Aces catcher Carlos Corporan and the ball rolled free.

DeLome was met with his celebratory teammates rushing the field for the four-game series split with the Aces, while the hulking Corporan winced back to the dugout in obvious pain.

"I might not be big in stature but I play 100 percent and if that's what it takes and I'm not scared to do it," said DeLome, who came into the game in the top of the ninth for a double switch. "I had to score and that was the mentality that I had."

The Express (19-24) got the victory in their final at-bat, as they've seen their opponents win nine games in their final at-bat this season.

"We hung in there and things went our way today," manager Marc Bombard said. "It's been a lot of close games. We don't quit - we had a couple tough losses in a row and to come back and get that big hit (feels good)."

Yorman Bazardo (1-0) earned the victory in relief for the Express as he threw a scoreless ninth frame, allowing one hit with a strikeout. Tim Byrdak, on a rehab assignment, allowed a run on one hit and a walk in the first inning. Andy Van Hekken took over from there and allowed three runs, two earned, on seven hits and no walks with five strikeouts over 7.0 innings.

Luis Ayala (1-4) took the loss for the Aces (21-23) in relief after entering the game to start the ninth. Starter Kevin Mulvey worked 5.1 innings allowed four runs on seven hits and a walk with one strikeout. Jose Marte tossed 2.2 scoreless innings of relief, scattering a hit and striking out three.

Matt Kata extended his hitting-streak to 11 games after going 2-for-4 with three RBI at the plate. Kata broke the previous record of 10 games, held by Bourgeois who came up with the big hit.

"I hope (Kata) continues to keep doing it - he's been swinging the bat well," said Bourgeois, who was 2-for-5 with a stolen base. "I guess it's time to start a new (streak) for me."

Round Rock continues its third home stand of the season Monday, starting a four-game series against the Las Vegas 51s (Toronto Blue Jays). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. CDT at The Dell Diamond. Southpaw Wesley Wright (2-0, 4.20 ERA) is scheduled to start for the Express, while right-hander Marty McLeary (0-2, 9.00 ERA) is slated to start for the 51s.

***

DeLome delivers cold shoulder as Express beat Reno

By Michael Sherfield AMERICAN-STATESMAN CORRESPONDENT

ROUND ROCK - Collin DeLome won't play golf this morning. His tee time, and Reno catcher Carlos Corporan, were victims of his home plate heroics Sunday afternoon as DeLome ran through a tag attempt to give the Express a 5-4, walk-off win.

"It's good sore," DeLome said about his shoulder, which was wrapped up after a collision that left Corporan on the ground for several seconds . "I might not be big in stature but I play 100 percent. If that's what it takes, that's what I'm going to do."

With the game tied in the ninth and a third consecutive last at-bat loss looming for Round Rock (19-24), DeLome hit a one-out single off the first baseman's glove to start the rally, after coming in as part of a double switch to start the inning.

Jason Bourgeois followed with a triple that just escaped the reach of center fielder Cole Gillespie .

DeLome held up at second to make sure the ball dropped, then raced around third,setting the stage for the decisive play at the plate.

"As soon as I saw he didn't catch it, it was 'I got to score,'u2009" he said. "That was the mentality I was running with."

It was a play Round Rock needed after losing two tight games to the Aces, 8-7 Friday and 5-4 in 12 innings Saturday. The teams split the series 2-2, with Round Rock winning its first series finale all season after losing the first 10.

"We've been in a lot of close games," manager Marc Bombard said. "We hung in and it went our way today. Flip a coin, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't."

Bourgeois played his own part in the heroics, delivering the key hit in a game that had turned into a pitching duel after both teams scored early.

"They'd been beating me inside all series u2026 finally I made that adjustment," said Bourgeois, whose 10-game hitting streak was snapped Saturday. "You never know(the ball's going to drop), you just hope for the best. Drop or get out."

***

May 21, 2010

Roster reconfiguration to impact Express significantly

MICHAEL POINT Special to the Leader

The long anticipated and even longer overdue Astros roster reconfiguration has apparently begun and the changes made in Houston will have significant impact on just who is in an Express uniform in the days ahead.

It's not the complete blowup and reboot of the team desired by Astros fans but the recent actions do indicate the Houston front office is finally moving beyond denial to a more proactive attitude in dealing with the league's most poorly-constructed and least productive roster.

The recent demotion of J.R. Towles to Double-A Corpus Christi was the opening move in the roster reconstruction. The belated release of second baseman Kaz Matsui earlier this week intensified the effort and there's little reason to believe more roster alterations won't be coming. There's even less reason for thinking such moves aren't needed.

The catch with the Astros moves is that they're more a matter of addition by subtraction than cases of genuine talent upgrades. Veteran Kevin Cash moved from the Express to the Astros to replace Towles as a backup catcher.

His presence will not be seen in the standings since that role is hardly the root cause of Houston's lack of success. In similar fashion the Wednesday elevation of veteran infielder Oswaldo Navarro to the Astros will do little more than give the team another bench player.

Edwin Maysonet, capable of replacing Matsui and/or backing up a struggling Tommy Manzella at shortstop, would have been the choice for promotion but a combination of a current injury and prior inadequate production prevented him from returning to the big leagues. But the healthy players who are posting the best offensive stats in Round Rock are also almost uniformly blocked from such promotions because their strengths are duplicated on the big league roster.

Jason Bourgeois has been the most consistent offensive force on the Express this season but there is no room in Houston for him because centerfield is already being patrolled by Michael Bourn. Carlos Lee and Hunter Pence, both mired in season-long slumps, are in no danger of being benched on the outfield corners. There is also no role for Brian Bogusevic, the hottest Express hitter in recent weeks, other than that of pinch-hitting.

Chris Johnson provided graphic evidence he is alive and well in the Thursday homestand opener, picking up four hits, including a home run, against Reno in the first game of the series. Free agent acquisition Pedro Feliz, however, remains anchored at third base for the Astros, who have a multi-million dollar vested interest in keeping him there.

The same night Johnson was launching a home run onto the Dell Diamond berm an Express ex was being mobbed at home plate by his Atlanta Braves teammates following a game-winning pinch-hit grand slam. Brooks Conrad, a seemingly perfect replacement for the Matsui roster spot in Houston, was the center of attention in Atlanta. And attention was definitely something he never received from the Astros front office.

Conrad's role with the Braves has been mostly that of a pinch-hitter but he's already appeared in 25 games this season. The grand slam was Conrad's third home run of the season. The combined home run total of all the Astros second basemen used so far this year is zero.

The Astros repeatedly bypassed Conrad, very possibly the most popular Express player in franchise history, for promotion. He was released after the 2007 season, his third consecutive year of hitting more than 20 home runs for the Express, when Houston opted to give Matsui $5.5 million a year to play second base.

Brooksie probably won't be coming back to the Astros system. Neither will another Express fan favorite, slugger Luke Scott, who has more home runs this year for the Baltimore Orioles than Carlos Lee and Lance Berkman have combined to hit for the Astros.

But personnel changes, whether minor or major, will now be happening on a regular basis. The persistent rumors of big-name trades, such as the departure of Berkman or Roy Oswalt from Houston, may or may not become reality. More likely is a continued effort to find replacements for less high-profile Astros and the vast majority of those substitutes will have to be drawn from the Astros system. That means Express player movement could, and quite frankly, should, be substantial in the near future.

It's debatable whether such movement will actually benefit the Astros. But for a team with the worst record in the NL any change has to be a good one. That's what the Express players primed for promotion are thinking while hoping for a callup. At this point, with the Astros farther out of first place than any team in the league, the odds seem to favor their hopes being realized in due course, despite the current roster gridlock.

***

May 20, 2010

Astros notes: Navarro makes his return

By ZACHARY LEVINE Houston Chronicle

Oswaldo Navarro's major league career before this week consisted of four plate appearances and six innings in the field four years ago. But he was back in a big league clubhouse Thursday ready for his second stint in the big leagues as the player called up to replace the waived Kaz Matsui.

"I feel ready," said Navarro, sporting a No. 26 jersey. "I'm prepared for that mentally and physically."

Navarro had three subpar seasons from 2007-09 that kept him down in the minors after that brief whiff of life in the big leagues and eventually spelled the end of his tenure with the Seattle Mariners organization, which had originally signed him.

He credits Class AAA Round Rock hitting coach Keith Bodie for the development that took him from a below-average minor league hitter to a .312 hitter this season.

"He helped me a lot, and I put up good numbers," Navarro said. "Just mental, a little more concentration, and that helped me this time put up good numbers in AAA."

Navarro was not in the starting lineup Thursday and will take a back seat at second base to starter Jeff Keppinger, but he also brings the ability to play shortstop and third base.

"The big thing about Ozzie is his versatility," manager Brad Mills said. "His best position right now might be second, but at the same time he's very versatile. That gives us more options to make more switches later in the ballgame."

Navarro struck out in his only at-bat Thursday, pinch-hitting for Roy Oswalt in the sixth inning.


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