The Houston Astros and 'Resurrection'
Fans of the Houston Astros have to be a pretty resilient bunch.
So far this season, the 'stros are sitting on a 22-43 record – giving the team a .338 winning percentage and putting them comfortably last in their division. They've collided haphazardly in the outfield, been on the imperfect side of a perfect game by Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish, and have been mentioned in the same breath as the 1962 Mets, who finished their regular season with a .250 winning percentage, which, were the team a single batter, would land him just north of the infamous Mendoza line.
Lastros, Disastros … You name the snarky nickname, they've earned it.
But their troubles are pretty light compared to what former Astros pitcher J.R. Richard has been through.
Richard started his baseball career in a spectacular fashion: He was the second pick in the 1969 amateur draft and went on to lead the National League numerous stats: run average, strikeouts, and hits allowed. But before a game in July 1980, he suffered a career-ending stroke at age 30; his attempted comeback failed, his personal life crumbled, and he eventually became just another homeless and destitute man on the Houston streets.
That is, until he turned his life around as a minister.
Richard's rollercoaster life is mapped out in Resurrection: The J.R. Richard Story, a 2005 film by director Greg Carter that's screening as part of the Made in Texas Film Series at the Bullock Museum in partnership with the Austin Film Festival. Check out his wild journey from the top to rock-bottom and back again, and join the rest of the world in wondering if the 2013 Astros can make as impressive a comeback.
Resurrection: The J.R. Richard Story screens tonight at 7pm at the Bullock Texas State History Museum (1800 Congress). Visit the AFF website for complete details and tickets ($5, general admission; free, TSHM and AFF members).