Roger ClemensLast week, Clemens’ decision to sign with the Yankees seemed like a no-brainer. Clemens wants to win, and he has a much better chance of doing that with the Yankees than with the Astros. Even the Astros’ players seemed resigned to the fact that their team wasn’t going to compete this year.

But that was a week ago. Today, the Astros are in second place, having won their last four games. They are 4.5 games back of first-place Milwaukee, which has lost it’s last four games. The Astros have been re-energized by the call-up of minor league sensation Hunter Pence, who looks like the second coming of Willie Mays, or at least a young Kenny Lofton.

The Yankees? They just split a double header against the White Sox and remain eight games behind the Red Sox. They’ve gone 5-5 in their last ten.

If Clemens wants to win, where does he stand a better chance? Playing for the Astros in the eminently winnable NL Central? Or playing for the Yankees, in one of the toughest divisions in baseball, trying to catch a Red Sox team that looks to be the best on the planet?

I say he’s got a better chance in Houston. And if Houston wins the NL Central, all of a sudden you’re talking about a team with two top of the line starters (Clemens and Oswalt), two all-star sluggers (Carlos Lee and Lance Berkman), and one speedy spark plug/rookie of the year candidate (Pence). Would you want to play that team in the playoffs?

4 Responses to “Did the Rocket plot the wrong course?”

  1. Nick Kapur says:

    Clemens plotted the entirely correct course to reach his true goal, which was to reunite with his man-crush-for-life Andy Pettite.

    “Playing for a winner” was just how he justifies his alternative choice of life partner.

  2. Houston didn’t offer him $28 million.

    He pulled this back in ’97 when he went to Toronto to “play for a winner” as well.

    Winning, schminning. His course hasn’t deviated a bit.

  3. Paul Moro says:

    Seeing as the Cardinals beat some pretty staggering odds to win the World Series last year, I can’t see another team like the Astros doing it this year. They may make the playoffs with Clemens (still no guarantee by any means), but they’re not likely to win the whole thing. The Yankees on the other hand have a much better chance to win, provided they actually make the playoffs.

    And if winning was all the guy cared about, he’d be on the Red Sox. But it’s not just winning. It’s winning with money and it’s winning with Andy Pettite.

  4. If he was going to go with a winning team, and have a serious chance at the post season, the Red Sox are obviously the ones to go with. But he knew all along he was going where the money was. The Yanks had it to give, so that’s where he’s went. Good to see that “I want to be part of a serious contender” really means “Sh*t, $28 million? Where do I sign?”

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