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Lance Berkman: Astros moving to AL would be “a travesty”

Nov 8, 2011, 3:52 PM EDT


Lance Berkman, who played the first 12 seasons of his career in Houston, called the Astros’ potential move to the American League “a travesty” and “a shame.”

Zachary Levine of the Houston Chronicle reports that Berkman, while appearing at a press conference for a memorabilia company, called the Astros “a National League franchise” and suggested that the Brewers should be the team to move because “they’re historically an American League franchise.”

He’s right about the Brewers, as they were in the AL from 1970 to 1997, but obviously previous AL membership isn’t the driving force behind the decision.

My favorite Berkman quote from the press conference:

Even when I retire and live here in Houston, I don’t want to go watch American League baseball. I’d like to have a National League team.

Between that statement and his poor production Berkman must have really hate his half-season with the Yankees.

  1. yankeesfanlen - Nov 8, 2011 at 3:59 PM

    Well, we hated his half-season with the Yankees as well.

    • uyf1950 - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:05 PM

      Truer words were never spoken my friend.

    • cur68 - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:16 PM

      If that’s his beef, then long memory on Fat Elvis, that’s for sure. Lots of water passed under the bridge, including a WS ring for him and he still carrying that around? Dude should maybe look at the bigger picture a bit.

    • thoran85 - Nov 8, 2011 at 10:42 PM

      Well, we loved his full season with the Cardinals

    • marshmallowsnake - Nov 9, 2011 at 1:07 PM

      I liked it…

  2. baseballisboring - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:07 PM

    Ah, yes…what a “travesty” that would be. Way to keep things in perspective

  3. canucks18 - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:09 PM

    I love that Berkman said this… Oh and as for the Yankees… I guess not everyone likes playing there, oh and look who has the ring hahahaha stick it yankeefan

    • uyf1950 - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:15 PM

      I wouldn’t like playing someplace either if stunk up the joint like Berkman did for the odd few months he played in NY.

    • phukyouk - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:37 PM

      do you mean all 27 of them?

    • paulsdamnblog - Nov 8, 2011 at 5:45 PM

      Dude really? How many rings have the Yankees won? You may want to table it and take a long look at the scoreboard there buddy.

      • shea801 - Nov 15, 2011 at 7:46 AM

        11 ain’t to shabby either. And last look at the scoreboard shows the Cardinals posted the season’s last ‘W’

        …just say’n

  4. SmackSaw - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:10 PM

    A travesty is what the Angels will do the ‘Stros if they move. It’ll be a damn shame.

    • 78mu - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:58 PM

      The Astros have always been a NL team and there is a team in their division that started out in the AL and even made an appearance in the WS representing the AL.

  5. cur68 - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:14 PM

    Am I misinterpreting something or is the Astro’s moving to the AL not that big a deal? This is hardly on the size of the historic scale like when the Dodgers left Brooklyn, which I think construes a “shame” or the Expos getting shafted out of Montreal, which is more like a “travesty” & a “shame”. The city keeps it team, team keeps it name & the AL gets some balance. True, they have to figure out how to use a DH (given their woeful offence they could use an extra bat vs the automatic out when the pitcher bats) & Fat Elvis will have to chill and gets some perspective. Meh. Small price to pay, IMO.

    • yankeesfanlen - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:23 PM

      Astros moving anywhere while standing still doesn’t draw much notice, does it?

      • cur68 - Nov 8, 2011 at 5:00 PM

        Really. I mean, they aren’t going anywhere, just have to use a DH and play some different teams. So what? They need the offence…hell, they need an offence, they can enjoy the bump that comes with a change, and they’ll get a bit more media time due to the move. So Berkman, who’s not even on the team any more, won’t like it; cry me a river. I know lots of people in Montreal who’d way rather have a ball club in the AL than no ball club at all.

        MLB could easily approve a move to sell the underperforming Astros to a deep pocket Vancouverite who’ relocate it to baseball starved British Columbia and about double the attendance figures at a stroke. Plus, then we’d get a way better team in the AL West: The Vancouver Beavers.

  6. druma13 - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:28 PM

    Funny, Puma played pretty good for the Cards. We don’t really care if he played horribly for the Yanks. After all, it was the Yanks…

  7. tomtravis76 - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:32 PM

    Realign all of baseball and or put in a salary cap.

    • hep3 - Nov 8, 2011 at 5:09 PM

      Yeah, and how is that salary cap working for the NBA?

  8. lazlosother - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:41 PM

    The Berk is entitled to his opinions, and having spent 12 years with Houston in the NL, it isn’t surprising that he thinks they should stay a national league team. God forbid he have an opinion.

    As for the NY crap, I didn’t notice the Puma say anything negative about NY or the AL. He wants to see NL ball, and again, given his history and the Astros, not difficult to understand. I’m a NY fan, but I always liked Berkman and I was glad to see him have the year he had in 11.

  9. marinersnate - Nov 8, 2011 at 4:50 PM

    Well, I for one favor the Astros moving to the AL West. With it then being a five team division I feel that there would be a very strong chance of the Mariners’ finishing as high as fourth and- Wait a minute. We finished fourth last year. And the year before. Heck, we can finish fourth without the Astros. Scratch all that. Never mind….

  10. okwhitefalcon - Nov 8, 2011 at 5:22 PM

    Not surprising, Puma’s not a fan of the DH/AL style in general.

    His not so subtle “gorilla ball” jab during the WS was hysterical.

  11. thekingdave - Nov 8, 2011 at 5:26 PM


    You’re nuts if you think the Astros are moving anywhere. As far as the move goes, it’s not so cut and dry as you make it seem. Houston has been a NL city dating back to the Cardinals minor league affiliate playing here. The Astros are being blackmailed into a switch by Bud Selig in its worst season ever and a pending ownership change, all to protect this Brewers. The closest NL teams to the state of Texas will now be the Cards and Dbacks.

    • cur68 - Nov 8, 2011 at 6:50 PM

      I don’t “think” any such move is imminent at all. The statement was intended more as a wish. The Beavers; c’mon man, if you wouldn’t love a team named that you have no soul and there is no talking to you.

      As for the switch to the AL; its business. Its good for business. Hell, it’ll even be good for the Astros, who helisuck. They need a DH to improve their anemic offence and be able to get some of those aging but still able-at-the-plate sluggers on their roster who won’t hurt the defence.

      As for NL distance concerns; so what? Minor compared to having a little victory attached to that franchise for a change not to mention the revenue boost that Rangers/Astros revenue will generate. It’ll flat out be nice seeing that club have some life and soon. All you lose is a history of losing to NL clubs. I’m just amazed you, or anyone, for that matter, wants to hang on to that tradition of getting their a** handed to them all the time.

  12. bbk1000 - Nov 8, 2011 at 5:34 PM

    “Even when I retire and live here in Houston, I don’t want to go watch American League baseball. I’d like to have a National League team”

    HAHA, I have to agree, I prefer NL baseball as well. Was it Charlie Finley who came up with the DH because he thought the league was boring?

    When it gets boring next time the perhaps the A.L. players will be forced to round the bases in a potato sack, or perhaps hop on one leg. They could put a hopscotch board between the bases which would liven things up a bit as well, whatever the attention span of the fans require.


  13. tashkalucy - Nov 8, 2011 at 6:17 PM

    The real reason for the move is simply that

    1) Houston is close to Dallas so teams coming through can make a Texas trip and play bot, thereby saving on travel expenses, and

    2) there can be a natural rivalry between the Rangers and Astros.

  14. thekingdave - Nov 8, 2011 at 9:31 PM

    Tradition? Did you start watching baseball in 2006? The Bagwell/Biggio era Stros had one of the highest winning percentages in the MLB. The Rangers revenue thing is moot since Ranger/Astro bandwagon fans are basically the same people. As far as competition, having to match up against the Sox and Yanks when they do make it back to the playoffs? Pass. People in Houston don’t want it.

  15. dowhatifeellike - Nov 8, 2011 at 11:02 PM

    Why would the Astros move to the AL when the Brewers just left? Is there some balancing issue that I’m not aware of?

  16. cshearing - Nov 9, 2011 at 8:43 AM

    I find the whole NL vs AL thing silly and overblown. The fact people get so riled up about it makes me smile.

  17. cintiphil - Nov 9, 2011 at 10:31 AM

    Lets separate the two issues.:
    First, it is unlike the Yankee fans to dis a great player just because he was injured while playing for them. Too bad they gave up on Berk, as he showed that he can come back the next year. While at Houston and St. Lou, he killed the Reds. He and the other “B’s” came to town and tore us apart almost every game. Now in St. Lou, he again came to town and beat us silly with his bat. So Yankee fans give him a break. He didn’t want to [play hurt in 2010, but he had to. Just like the talk show (or reporter) nut in Houston who said why didn’t you get in shape and play like this in your last year here etc etc.. I am sure that the guy has great pride and did try very hard to get over his injuries and just had a streak of bad luck. I like to watch the guy play, even when he is hammering the Reds, so get off his case. He had a bad streak of a couple of years, mostly due to injuries. Cannot help that!

    Second: The Astros belong in the NL and the Brewers to the AL, so lets make the switch. I personally am for this arrangement. Unless of course, the Texas fans want a rival series year after year between the two cities, so let it up to TEXAS!

  18. foreverchipper10 - Nov 9, 2011 at 11:06 AM

    This whole thread is a travashamockery.

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