It’s time for the All-Time Astros tournament: The SWEET 16, where things start getting down to the nitty-gritty. Voters came hard in the round of 32 with routes up and down the board, including 6 goose eggs (Derek Bell, George Springer, Enos Cabell, Phil Garner, Brad Lidge, Larry Dierker). The closet matchup of the week went to Charlie Morton’s 5-4 win over Art Howe. The only other two close contests Justin Verlander over Joe Niekro 6-3 and Ken Caminiti over Shane Reynolds 6-3.
It’s not that the blow outs were unexpected, but that they did bring some disapointment from saying goodbye to legends. Derek Bell was predictably the first Killer Bee to fall. We also had to say goodbye to my favorite all-time Astro coach, Mr Astro Larry Dierker.
So far all four top seeds have advanced in Nolan Ryan, Mike Scott, Craig Biggio and Jeff Bagwell. All four will see there best matchup of the tourny this round. It will be interesting to see how the voters view the Bagwell-Verlander contest. Will the recency of a World Series title be enough to push Verlander over the clubs greatest slugger? The closest pairing of this round in my mind appears to be Roy Oswalt and Lance Berkman. The former teamates will battle it out to take on the winner of Biggio-Morton. My prediction for biggest heartbrake will be the Nolan Ryan-Jose Lima vote. No matter what, I will be a little sad with the loser of that one.
As we pass the midway point in our tournament things will start to heat up. Make sure to be a part of it!
Click here to vote for your all-time favorite Astro now through April 3rd. Then come back to see who makes it out of the All-Time Astro Tournament: The Sweet 16!