Houston Astros: A healthy Carlos Correa better than any offseason addition

Carlos Correa of the Houston Astros (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images)
Carlos Correa of the Houston Astros (Photo by Jon Durr/Getty Images) /

Houston Astros star shortstop, Carlos Correa is back to 100%. Having him healthy could be better than any offseason addition the team could have made.

The Houston Astros have made some moves this offseason but there weren’t as many moves and as big of moves as many thought there might be. Robinson Chirinos will be a solid catcher, Aledmys Diaz seems like he might adequately fill Marwin Gonzalez role. Michael Brantley is best, biggest, and flashiest move.

There are definitely still additions that the team can make and still might make but, at this point, Brantley will likely remain the team’s biggest offseason addition. There were a lot of players the team was linked to both in trade and free agency but none of them have really come to fruition though, a Dallas Keuchel is now looking more likely than it did a couple months ago.

However, one of the best things that has happened to the team this offseason is a return to health. The Astros dealt with a plethora of injuries during the 2018 season, which makes the 103 wins even more impressive.

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Star second baseman Jose Altuve injured his knee and went on the disabled list for the first time in his career. George Springer missed time with a couple of different injuries. Lance McCullers hurt his elbow and missed time and is now out for all of 2019 with Tommy John surgery.

But, one of the biggest injuries the Houston Astros had to deal with was Carlos Correa‘s injury. Correa injured his oblique and lower back fairly early on in the season and he missed a ton of time because of it. Once he finally returned, it was obvious he was not the same player and was still plagued by the injury.

He ended up a “healthy” scratch a lot of the time during the final stretch of the season in hopes of securing the division and getting him healthy during the playoffs. He never really got there and it showed in the playoffs and he, unfortunately, became a black hole in the lineup.

There, apparently, was more to his struggles than just his back. When the season ended, Correa had surgery for a deviated septum, which isn’t a baseball injury and doesn’t sound overly serious. However, a deviated septum can cause issues breathing and getting deep breathes but it can also affect sleep habits and cause one to have restless nights.

But, according to Correa via the Houston Chronicle, both of those issues are far in the rearview mirror. This is obviously great news for Correa but it is also terrific news for the Houston Astros. When healthy, Correa has as good as potential as anyone, potential that is capable of bringing home an MVP trophy.

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If he is healthy, Correa’s bat is one of the best in the league. He can hit with power and finesse to all fields. Correa is more than capable of launching 30+ homers and driving in 100+ runs with games to spare. A bad back decimated that skill in 2018 but his training this offseason sees him hitting balls for four hours a day without any issue.

If Correa can return to form, the form that saw him win rookie of the year and receive a ton of MVP hype, it will be a bigger boon to the Houston Astros than nearly any free agent or trade could have been. Correa is a premium bat at a premium position something that the Houston Astros really couldn’t have done this offseason.

Having his bat, glove, and arm back in the lineup full time in a healthy way will provide a bigger boost than any other position player could have provided. Correa is that good and getting him back healthy is that important. Having him anchoring the middle of the lineup will also help the team return to the top of the offensive charts, covering any potential pitching woes.

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In four years, all with the Houston Astros, Correa has launched over 80 home runs, driven in over 100 runs, and hit over 100 doubles. He also boasts a .277/.356/.477 slash line which gets much better if you take out last year’s dud. Having him back fully healthy may be the greatest storyline for the team heading into the 2019 season.