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Castro will get off to a slow start, intentionally

The Sports Xchange
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--C Jason Castro will be worked in slowly this spring training even when he is fully recovered from foot surgery, which the club expects to be the second week of spring training. Castro will be joined by Chris Snyder, Humberto Quintero and Carlos Corporan on the camp roster, and his progress will determine how many of those make the club as management has gone back and forth on the possibility of three catchers. "It's going to be slow going with (Castro) for a while, and that's not necessarily bad because we're going to see a lot of Snyder and Q and Corporan," manager Brad Mills said.

--C Chris Snyder put on his No. 18 Astros uniform for the first time at the club's FanFest. The Houston native and University of Houston alum admitted that even when he was in Arizona and Pittsburgh, he had half an eye on playing in Texas some day. "Deep down you're always going to want to be part of your hometown team," Snyder said.

--OF Jason Bourgeois, one of the Astros' three Houston natives, was not going to be on board with a name change to his childhood local team. But he was on board with owner Jim Crane's tease of a name change, since revoked. "It shocked me at first," Bourgeois said. "I was like, 'What, name change?' and then I had to think about it. It's a great marketing strategy, you have everybody going, riled up a little bit. It showed how many fans cared."

--RHP Livan Hernandez was the subject of a wage garnishment filing in Miami-Dade County, Fla. Suntrust Bank has filed for the Astros to withhold nearly a half million dollars in salary, matching a filing against the Nationals last year when Hernandez was with them. At issue are two lines of credit, plus interest and attorney's costs and fees totaling $469,387.22.

--Former All-Star 2B Craig Biggio will remain in the Astros' front office, although he is not technically under contract, which expired as the Astros ownership change was ongoing. "Because of the timing that they inherited the club (two weeks) before the winter meetings, they had a lot of things to digest," Biggio said. "It's all going to get worked out. We'll sit down and figure out the title and the status. ... I want to be part of the equation that rebuilds this thing and put this thing back together."

BY THE NUMBERS
7 -- Pitching prospects, including consensus top pitching candidate Jarred Cosart and 2010 first-round pick Mike Foltynewicz, who will report to camp early in order to get a taste of working with the big leaguers.

QUOTE TO NOTE
"Baseball was the greatest game in the world when I started, and it still is today. ... And when the end of the (2012) season comes and I do that last game as the voice of the club, I'll still be around doing a lot of things." -- Milo Hamilton, Hall-of-Fame Astros radio broadcaster, announcing that 2012 would be his final season in the booth. He still hopes to stay in baseball long enough to hit 70 years in 2015.

Copyright (C) 2012 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.

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