NERDS AROUND TOWN

Nerds Around Town: Punk Rock, The Predator and the Jets

Nerds Around Town: Punk Rock, The Predator and the Jets

Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio, Sports and Wrestling. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio show at www.nerdthugradio.com!

Hey Nerds!

Here comes the weekend, so get ready! It's Thursday and here comes that all so beautiful Friday night.

GOOD DEED OF THE DAY

Sunday at noon, at Exit 73 there will be a benefit raising money to help Michael Almendarez and his family fight the costs of his cancer diagnosis. There will be a bounce house and kid friendly things as well as BBQ plates for sell with the benefits helping to offset some of the costs of his treatment. #NerdsUnite

HAVE YOU HEARD?

There's a band I discovered the other day called Skating Polly, I love them. It's well produced poppy but not pop punk. It isn't that California punk, it's almost more Seattle grunge punk of the mid 90s and it's so much fun to listen to. I recommend getting on your internets and checking out Skating Polly, it's a small, simple band with a woman lead singer but they really nail some songs you have to check out Camelot if nothing else.

THE PREDATOR

So I just watched The Predator that came out last year, I'd never seen it because honestly it didn't look all that good. Turns out, it wasn't. It wasn't bad and it does a good job of violence and plot twists, like it wasn't unbearably bad or terribly written it just wasn't very good. Olivia Munn is ok, and the unit of crazy soldiers was ok, and the government guys were ok, it just was a bunch of ok all shoved together in a movie. Also it has one of the worst end credit scenes in recent history where there's like an Iron Man super suit left off that they could have used to fight the big bad Predator previously. Also a couple of times, the smaller, less evil Predator who has already shown a high propensity for violence has his hands on people and chooses not to just rip them apart for various plot reasons. The whole experience was underwhelming.

WHO IS IN CHARGE HERE

One thing that's been happening a lot that I've really started to question is the decision makers in organizations. The Jets fired their General Manager like three weeks after the draft and after he spent $200 million on free agents, what? Dallas Keuchel is still a free agent, who were his advisors, the movie The Predator was not great, who approved it at what budget level? Sometimes I seriously wonder about the people doing the dollars and sense of things in the world, if they only spent about $45 million on Predator then great, if they spent $90m and another $30m to market it, now it's not looking great. HBO spent $70+ million dollars on a 6 episode season, who decided that? Why not an 8 or 9 episode season so some of the things people have been complaining about could be addressed and maybe you only show the dragon burning two or three city blocks instead of all of downtown King's Landing. There were places to pick better but hey what do I know, I'm not a decider.

NOT THAT YOU ASKED

I don't get too political but I have a real question, how are these abortion laws supposed to be interpreted by independent voters? Even evangelical Pat Robertson said this law is too extreme. Also giving a longer sentence to people who get abortions than the people who committed the initial crimes against them in the first place of rape or incest truly shows the hierarchy of importance. The rapist gets a stiff 30 year penalty, the woman who is a victim of rape but doesn't want to keep a rapist's baby gets 99 years? That's an incredibly unjust and bizarre overture to the middle ground voters. What are you asking women to think of this? What are we telling mother's and daughters of Alabama? Don't be victims of crimes? Don't be fertile? These are truly odd times we live in.

I'm going to jump out and wish you guys a great Thursday and remind everyone to be kind to each other and try a little harder to have a great day! I'm coming back Friday and we'll be bringing more good times your way. Feel free to check out my digital short story The Wilson House or buy a shirt from Side Hustle Ts where some proceeds help fight cancer or listen to Nerd Thug Radio or support our Patreon Page. Thoughts, complaints, events and comments can be sent to corydlg@gmail.com.

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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.

We'll continue to drop videos throughout the week!


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