OK, this story’s a few days old, but I’ve been struggling with a stalker. Astros P Jason Hirsh was named the Pacific Coast League’s Hurler O’ 2006 after compiling a 13-2 record with Round Rock earlier this year. Hirsh won 12 consecutive and held opponents to a .193 batting average. There’s been some talk out of Houston about Hirsh turning up late for a game and blowing off the media after a poor outing, but I saw no such behavioral issues during his Express tenure. He always beat me to the games, and if he ever snubbed the local press, well, who could blame him?

Notes In A Minor Key’s Mike Emerigh serves a poor review for a once-touted player acquired by Tampa Bay in the Julio Lugo deal.

Joel Guzman has fallen so far off the prospect map that he™s going to need a guide dog to find his way back. I saw him play three games this past week in Durham, and he has (a) a very slow bat and (b) slow reflexes in the field. He totally misjudged two popups (only one of which cost him an error), was caught flatfooted on a routine grounder (which he booted), dived for a grounder that wasn™t more than about two feet to his left (making what should have been a relatively simple play took hard) and didn™t hit a single ball with any authority whatsoever. I have no idea what happened here, but he™s not someone who I™d even take a flyer on at this point.

Here’s something you’re not likely to see very often : Trot Nixon leading off, Jason Varitek hitting 2nd. ‘Tek’s first inning solo HR has Pawtucket leading Ottawa, 1-0.

The Phillies have acquired Randall Simon, most recently seen in CSTB’s ‘hood patrolling the outfield for Triple-A Oklahoma City, from the Rangers.

“We don’t have no hot dog mascots here,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said, laughing.

No English tutors, either, but even Michael Tucker thought Simon was washed up. The Mets have called up Heath Bell and Royce Ring, while the White Sox have promoted RHP Charlie Haeger, lefty Boone Logan and catcher Chris Stewart.