Updated: Jun 26
Tonight, I am going to document several fake narratives that this fan base is exposed to almost daily. I will add to these as I need to. These are used to gaslight this fan base into believing this is the best this team can do, that Dusty is a genius and anyone who would criticize or have an independent thought MUST be silenced. The narratives pushers want you to believe that one of the worst players in the MLB- Maldonado- isn't. You can read more about the truth of that here. I am TIRED of these falsehoods and as long as I have this website, I will fight back against the gaslighting. Folks, this is the worst thing for me to do for this site. I should just shut up and let you be gaslighted and be popular and get more members and patreon supporters and more ad revenue. Sorry, that is not me. So, I am not sorry. If you are here, you know who I am and what this site is about, or you soon will.
We are going to try to do this in a creative way. Imagine a conversation between you (a well-informed Astros fan) and a fake narrative pusher (I call them cult members because a cult is the closest thing I know of in the world to describe how these people operate.)
These conversations are basically versions of these I have all of the time. It is getting old. I can just cut and paste now and be done with it.
Narrative: The Pitchers All Want to Throw to Maldonado
Cult: Framber likes to throw to only Maldy
Fan: When was the last time he did not pitch to Maldy?
Cult: March 18 & 24 In Spring Training he threw to Lee
Fan: Didn't he say in Spring Training that he really like throwing to Lee because Lee called the pitches he wanted to throw?
Cult: Javier only wants to throw to Maldy
Fan: When was the last time Javier pitched to Diaz?
Cult: May 28th
Fan: Oh, so he gave up one run in 5 IP that day. Was that a problem? Clearly, he should never pitch to him again. Right? That is pretty silly.
Cult: Brown NEEDS Maldy so he learns how to pitch
Fan: How many times has he pitched to both Maldy and Diaz?
Cult: Six Times and 34 IP each
Fan: What is the ERA to each?
Cult: 4.76 to Maldy and 2.62 to Diaz
Fan: Looks like he does better to Diaz
Cult: Well, it was against better teams to Maldy
Fan: Oh, what were the teams
Cult: Maldy- Det (3.57 R/G), CHW (4.20), Oak (3.62), Oak (3.62), Min (4.27), Tor (4.57)
Cult: Diaz- Min (4.27), Tex (6.27), Atl (5.17), TBR (5.76), SFG (4.59), LAA (4.82)
Fan: So, When Hunter Brown pitched to Diaz it was against many of the top hitting teams and he pitched to almost half of the ERA than when he pitched to Maldy against many of the worst hitting teams.
Fan: So, what you said was completely untrue
Cult: Well, maybe but I know some other things.
Narrative: Diaz Doesn't Call a good Game Yet
Cult: Diaz Doesn't call as good of a pitch mix as Maldy
Fan: How would one know that? Wouldn't the pitchers pitch better to Maldy than when they pitched to Diaz? Because it might be your OPINION that Maldy calls better pitches but if it doesn't lead to better results, is that really true?
Cult: Well, they don't measure that. You have to trust me I know what I am talking about. t read that all the pitchers agree that Maldy calls a better game. Dusty said it too.
Fan: Well, Framber hasn't even pitched to him yet so I am not sure how he would know. We said Javier only has one start with Diaz so that seems like a small sample for such an opinion. Why would Dusty weigh in as knowledgeable on this issue when he said last year, he just does what the pitching coaches tell him to do.
Fan: You know there is a way to measure that called Catcher ERA here. It says that the Astros pitchers have a 3.07 ERA pitching to Diaz and a 3.39 ERA pitching to Maldy. That is statistically the same at worst or an advantage for Diaz.
Cult: Well, Maldy has all of the harder teams.
Fan: We just went through the teams for Brown in detail and proved that wasn't true.
Cult: Oh Yeah, well I forgot. That is what the media says.
Fan: Do you know how little the media ACTUALLY looks at this stuff?
Cult: Well, I am telling you it is true.
Fan: But we just showed it wasn't. If you THINK Maldy calls a better game, but it doesn't lead to better results; your opinion or even Dusty's opinion should not overrule the facts.
Narrative: Maldy is the Team Leader
Cult: Well, EVERYONE knows that Maldy is the team leader. You can't reduce his playing time or in any way demote him.
Fan: Well, that concept of a single team leader is confusing. I think if the Astros have a single clubhouse leader it is Altuve. The Astros are 10-5 since he returned. The Astros are only 24-22 in the games Maldy plays in. Seems like if Maldy was such a great leader they would be better when he played than when he didn't play. The Astros are the opposite of that.
Cult: Well, everyone says he is the team leader.
Fan: Well, then let's compare leadership styles.
Fan: You remember when Altuve had his worst season in 2020? You also remember how he ASKED Dusty to move him down in the lineup because he was hurting the team?
Cult: Yeah, I remember that.
Fan: You also remember that in this off-season when the Astros said they were going to pursue other possibilities at Catcher that Maldonado got on his social media and was outraged and hurt that the team would even consider it? This is for a catcher that was did so poorly in 2022 that the front office traded for Vazquez to help.
Cult: Yeah, because that was a slap in the face to Maldy. The leader should never have to be demoted like I said before. It will hurt team morale.
Fan: Then why was Altuve willing to move back in the order- to be demoted in his role- when he could see that his performance was not good enough? See a real leader in my book is less worried about HIS role and him being promoted or demoted. He cares about the team. Altuve is doing it right now with Dubon. He is more than willing to share time because he KNOWS Dubon is a better fielder and is doing very well at the plate. He cares more about the team than he does himself. THAT is why Altuve is the team leader.
Cult: Ok. Yeah, but this team NEEDS Maldy's leadership too.
Fan: So, no one says he can't still lead and help MENTOR Diaz. Help Diaz be a better professional catcher. That's what Correa did for Pena. I would think Maldy would even be better at the leadership things IF he wasn't starting 70% of the time at catcher.
Fan: There is another thing here about the whole team leader narrative. The same was said about Yuli last year. It was said that this team would NEVER allow Yuli to leave.
Cult: That's true this team hated that the front office did not bring Yuli back.
Fan: Then WHY did many of the players I consider to be the actual team leaders including Altuve lobby the Astros to get Abreu. It was the PLAYERS that recruited Abreu by THEIR testimonials. IF they were so dependent on Yuli, they would not have done that.
Cult: What is your point?
Fan: It's a funny thing about clubhouses. They like to win. They pretty much will adjust to ANYTHING if they think it will help them win. So, if Diaz played more and showed the team he could help the team win more, they would adjust to the smaller role for Maldy knowing he won't be back next year as a player.
I already saw one cult response to some of these topics today that I really want to address out of the conversation style. Essentially, this response is an attempt to slam me and others as not having clubhouse knowledge. I do not think ONCE in any of these narrative discussions did I claim an Iota of Astros clubhouse knowledge. Exactly the opposite. I have NEVER claimed sources here. For what I said, I don't NEED sources. For me it is a RESULTS based environment. How anyone FEELS about any of these topics is irrelevant. All that matters to me is doing what needs to be done to win another ring. Most of what is said in public is for us the public. What is said in public can be very different than what is said in Dana Brown's office. The Gurriel situation is an example of that. The private trumps the public.
Narrative: Dusty Baker is a Great Manager
Folks, this one deserves its own article. This fan base is not ready yet for me to truly break this down.
Feel free to use this logic with the cult. What other narratives do you think I should refute? Add any suggestions below in the comments section.
Support the Site
Folks, I have never asked for money but SEVERAL of you said I should be paid for what I do.'
I am going to be honest with you. There are some articles I do that take a LOT of time.
Because it takes time, I really would appreciate your support of the work. Here is your opportunity to do that at a nominal cost. This support will help me continue to provide you what I do- objective analysis of your teams.
This is completely VOLUNTARY.
The details are below and available at Patreon.com