We’ve already stated our case as to why we expect Roger Clemens to pitch for the Astros this season. And now, Astros owner Jim Crane just threw a bucket of gasoline on that fire.
In an interview with Fox 26 in Houston, Crane says that despite having had no contact with Clemens or his representatives in regards to pitching for the Astros this season, the organization is preparing themselves for the possibility. And that he is open to signing Clemens this season.
But Crane does have one concern. He does not want this to be seen as publicity stunt. Despite that fact that signing a famous 50-year-old pitcher to a contract in the final months of the season will undoubtedly bring publicity.
“The only thing we don’t want to do is make it a publicity stunt. If we did it, I want to try and take it and turn it into a positive, which would be Roger’s doing it for the good of baseball. The extra proceeds on the game might go to the (Astros’) community charity deal to build (baseball) fields, do something positive out of it.
“I think the fans might like it. It might be fun and certainly get a few people in the ballpark. I don’t see anything negative about that, but the Astros wouldn’t want to do it for the money, the extra gate or anything like that.”
Crane goes on about Clemens helping with the young pitchers and possibly coaching without actually being a coach.
Then Crane attempts to justify his interest in signing Clemens by using the old, “Well if we don’t do it, someone else will” defense.
“The other thing is if we don’t do it, you know what, somebody else is going to do it. If he wants to pitch somebody else is going to do it.”
But again, this isn’t a publicity stunt.