Top 5 Astros stories of 2013

5 of 5

#1. The CSN Houston debacle

Sorry to end things on a low note but this was — by far — the biggest story of the year. The Regional Sports Network that was supposed to bring in a ton of money for the Astros has been a total flop. Only 40 percent of Houstonians were able to watch Astros games in the comfort of their own homes in 2013. Meanwhile, fans in outlying areas were left completely out in the cold.

Astros fans in Austin, San Antonio, and New Orleans who were accustomed to watching their team play every night on TV found themselves watching dots run around the bases on’s gameday or — even worse — trying to decipher Steve Sparks’ play-by-play ramblings on the radio.

Fans as far away as New Mexico and Arkansas were unable to watch the Astros — even if they were willing to pay money to do so. Major League Baseball’s archaic blackout rules make it impossible for fans who live as far as 500 miles from Houston to view Astros games on TV.

One year, several empty promises, and umpteen lawsuits later, millions of us are still left staring at a blue screen. As we move from 2013 into 2014 the biggest story becomes an even bigger issue. How long will it be before our ability to watch the games on TV is restored?