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Astros to file an insurance claim on Bagwell

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In the latest twist in the Jeff Bagwell saga, the Astros are going to file an insurance claim on Bagwell. The Astros allege that Bagwell's career is effectively over because of his injured shoulder, and will seek to collect $15.6 million from the insurer.

The problem for the Astros, of course, is that Jeff Bagwell thinks he can still play, and if Bagwell can still play, then they can't collect on the insurance.

This could be a dicey situation...Bagwell, of course, was (with Craig Biggio) the face of the Astros franchise for years, and is still loved in the city of Houston. Getting into a pissing match over this could result in Bagwell's tenure with the Astros ending on a real sour note, and turning into a p.r. disaster.

The trump card for the Astros, of course, is their inevitable spin that the insurance money is necessary so that they can afford to pay Roger Clemens...and while the fans love Bagwell, if they have a choice between seeing a hobble, broken-down Bagwell on the field in 2006, or Roger Clemens, I'm betting they'd pick Clemens.