It may take a while for Quad-Cities River Bandits fans to warm to the club’s new Houston Astros affiliation.

The Astros have been doormats this year for the Cardinals, who’ve won 10 straight against Houston, including a 4-0 shutout the day after the Bandits announced the Astros to replace the Cards as our local team’s major-league parent.

Next year, the Astros move to the American League, where they’ll face four established teams within a 350-mile radius: the White Sox, Brewers, Royals and Twins.

But we’re ready to celebrate change.

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The Astros’, um, limited success (their 50 wins is fewest in the majors this year) leaves them with some top draft choices and a farm system that seems likely to deliver some promising prospects to Modern Woodmen Park.

And that’s always been the appeal of our River Bandits: An opportunity to see young men with big-league aspirations.

That leaves us reluctantly hoping the Astros continue their 2012 slump to bolster the Bandits with top prospects in 2013.

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