Paging Jesus Guzman. Paging Jesus Guzman. chirp… chirp… chirp. That’s the sound of crickets.
Jesus Guzman hit a deep fly ball to centerfield to mercifully put an end to an 11-0 loss to the Red Sox and usher in the All-Star break. That pinch-hit appearance was the only time we’ve seen Guzman in a game since July 1. Note: There were probably about 1,00o fans left in the stadium and maybe a handful of people watching on TV at that point, so it’s been a really long time since most of us have seen Guzman.
For the last 12 games the Astros have essentially been playing with a 24-man roster. This team simply doesn’t have the depth to pull that off. It’s time to make a decision on Guzman and run with it.
It seems obvious to me that Guzman did or said something to find his way into Bo Porter‘s doghouse. Granted, his performance hasn’t warranted a ton of playing time, but wasting a roster spot isn’t something that good teams do. Any decision scientist will tell you that.
The way I see it, the Astros have two options.
One: Put Guzman in the lineup. Hope he can get on a hot streak and raise his trade value from zero to a PTBNL or cash.
Two: Put him on waivers and bring up Austin Wates.
Guzman’s opening day homerun got a few of us excited but it’s been all downhill from there. Wates, on the other hand, is enjoying a solid season at AAA Oklahoma City. With Dexter Fowler and Alex Presley both on the disabled list, the Astros outfield is stretched pretty darn thin. This seems like the perfect time to call up Wates and see what he can do.
Wates, 25, has a .304 career batting average in 1,496 minor league plate appearances. The speedy outfielder is reaching base at a .403 clip and leads the PCL in stolen bases. Wates will be eligible for the Rule 5 Draft come November, so there’s no reason to keep him off the 40-man roster.
The time has come. #FreeAustinWates