In addition to highlights provided in a Herald-Leader/kentucky.com article, here’s what some of the fellas had to say.
“How many guys do we have up here — three or four guys?” third baseman Chris Johnson said. Told that the number was seven, he continued: “Wow! That’s great. That’s actually a testament to the Astros for drafting guys and getting them through the system. They’re really trying to develop us. And it’s a credit to all the coaches that we played with coming up through the system. They’ve really transformed us into being pretty good ballplayers.”
In addition to Johnson, the Astros include former Legends Fernando Abad, Brian Bogusevic, Bud Norris, Hunter Pence, Wandy Rodriguez and J.R. Towles.
Johnson says he loves playing in Houston’s Minute Maid Park, but there’s also something about Chicago.
“That’s probably one of my favorite stops,” he said. “Just because as a kid I’ve always grown up dreaming about playing in Wrigley Field. All the history there, being so old. I haven’t been to Fenway (in Boston). … As a kid, those are two places I really wanted to go. So, one down.”
(Believe it or not, Johnson’s father Ron is first-base coach for the Red Sox.)
Towles, a catcher, on being hampered for two weeks-plus by a left ankle sprain — “I want to keep playing, so it’s going to be nagging around, staying around longer than if I would just stay off of it. But it’s one of those things that I can’t stay off of it, so it’s going to hang around. But it’s doing a lot better, and as long as it doesn’t get worse (will be OK).”
Norris on his days with Lexington pitching coach Charley Taylor — “I’m glad to see he’s healthy (after battling cancer). Charley was very encouraging. That was the thing. He always patted you on the back whether you did good or bad or in between, and it was kind of nice to have that at that level.”
Rodriguez (a.k.a. Eny Cabreja) on his time in the Bluegrass — “Nice place. And I had a good season when I was there, too. Won 11 games. I love Lexington.”