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9 Houston stores for fashionable Astros fans

9 Houston stores for fashionable Astros fans
The Dooney & Bourke Astros satchel. Photo courtesy of Dooney & Bourke

This article originally appeared on CultureMap.

Orange really is the new black. For stylish Houstonians and Houston Astros fans alike, the vibrant hue is having its moment.

No matter where you're cheering on the 'Stros, you'll want to put together a look that is not only stylish but also stadium-approved. Fortunately, these Houston accessories and apparel shops and events have everything you need for through Game 7.

Carla Valencia Design

Customize your denim jacket or bedazzle your Astros jersey with patches and embroidery galore. The father-daughter duo recently added custom visors to their repertoire.

Debbie Clemens

Debbie Clemens' Hyde Me Purses are handmade with genuine leather and fit all the essentials you'll need while watching the Astros #TakeItBack. She is the wife of Roger Clemens, former Houston Astros pitcher, and her accessories can also be found at DASH, the home décor and gift market.

Deutsch Fine Jewelry

What's better than cheering on your favorite baseball team while wearing sapphires and diamonds? We'll wait. "For a World Series-worth ring of your own," Deutsch carries a Picchiotti sapphire and diamond eternity band. If earrings are more your style, check out sapphire halo earrings from Kwiat Ashoka. Astros-themed and traditional cufflinks will "knock the ball out of the park," a representative for the brand tells CultureMap.

Dooney & Bourke

The American accessories brand is covering all the bases with its officially licensed MLB Collection, including double zip satchels, wristlets, crossbody bags, wallets, and backpacks. Shop online or at the Astros Team Store at Minute Maid Park.

Continue on CultureMap to see the rest of the list.

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How significant Astros spring training revelation highlights even more reasons for optimism

The Houston Astros had a very successful season in 2023 which led them back to the ALCS for the seventh-straight season, but despite another deep playoff run, their pitching did regress from the prior year.

While many would point to their historic bullpen in 2022 and say they had nowhere to go but down, that doesn't paint the full picture. It was the starting rotation that really fell off in 2023. Justin Verlander, Framber Valdez, Cristian Javier, Hunter Brown, and Jose Urquidy all saw a spike in their ERAs from the previous season.

According to a recent report from The Athletic's Chandler Rome, we might have an explanation for Jose Urquidy's down year.

The Astros and Urquidy believe he was tipping his pitches. Which would explain why the slugging percentage against his fastball jumped from .482 in 2022 to .632 in 2023.

When hitters know a pitcher is tipping, they often start hunting fastballs. Also, his strikeout percentage went down last year and his walks went way up. He had 2 more walks per nine innings in 2023 than he had in 2021.

Part of that could be him aiming for corners and refusing to give in to hitters because his fastball wasn't performing up to expectations.

His WHIP in 2023 really jumped off the page as well. He finished with a WHIP over 1.4. While his career WHIP is 1.143. That's a huge difference.

Back to the big picture

Until last season, Urquidy never finished with an ERA over 3.95. He recorded a 5.29 ERA last year. So when we factor in his shoulder injury that cost him three months of the season, and the fact he was tipping pitches, we believe he's in store for a bounce-back season.

And the Astros are going to need him, especially with Justin Verlander and JP France possibly not being available for the start of the season.

What will the rotation look like early on?

The Astros haven't ruled Verlander out yet, so he could be ready to go. But if not, and we base this off what we saw last season. The rotation will likely include Valdez, Javier, Brown, Urquidy, Ronel Blanco, and Brandon Bielak.

Don't miss the video above for the full discussion!

Catch Stone Cold 'Stros (an Astros podcast) with Charlie Pallilo, Brandon Strange, and Josh Jordan every Monday on SportsMapHouston's YouTube channel.

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