Jim Crane is open to idea of Roger Clemens pitching for Astros t - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Jim Crane is open to idea of Roger Clemens pitching for Astros this season

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Houston Astros owner Jim Crane said, while his club has not been contacted by Roger Clemens or his representatives about pitching for the Astros this season, he said he and his staff are getting prepared for that possibility, and he is open to the idea.

However, Crane said the last thing he wants is a decision like that to be perceived as a publicity stunt on the part of his franchise.

Crane said he would seek approval from Major League Baseball before going forward with any potential decision concerning Clemens.

Clemens will return to professional baseball for the first time since 2007 when he pitches on Saturday for the Sugar Land Skeeters against the Bridgeport Bluefish in an Atlantic League game.

"If it goes all right and he comes to us, we'll talk to baseball about it at length," Crane said in an interview with FOX 26 Sports.

"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."

Clemens already has a personal services contract with the Astros.

Crane would like to augment that deal by having Clemens work with his pitchers as early as next year.

"What we're interested in, we've talked to him about, is teaching our young pitchers, not necessarily taking a full-time coach (role), but working with them consistently, the young guys, and that's what I've talked to him about at length, is starting next year, is getting a lot of our young prospects in giving them the mentality and the work ethic and the training," Crane said.

"There's a double-edged sword. I think if we were able to let him do (pitch), we'd want to blend that in.

"We've already got him under contract too. There are a lot of issues to consider, but I'm not ruling it out.

"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."

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