Houston Astros Rumors: Issues to solve, outlook strong in Spring Training

Houston Astros logo in Spring Training (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)
Houston Astros logo in Spring Training (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images) /
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Houston Astros SP
Justin Verlander of the Houston Astros (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images) /

Guys are throwing well but there are still problems to solve

First, the pitching staff needs to be evaluated. Hinch has stated that the Houston Astros will start the season with a 12 man staff. That leaves 5 Starters: The presumed rotation of Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole, Collin McHugh and Wade Miley. It also leads way for 7 relief pitchers, with Roberto Osuna as the already declared closer for the team.

12 Games in, the team is also dealing with the recent quad injury to Josh James that opens up spot number 5 in the rotation. James had been putting up some tremendous early numbers in the first few innings he pitched. However, the uncertainty of his recent ailment leaves more questions than answers.

Brady Rodgers would seem like a viable number 5 since he has the most innings under his belt so far. But Rogers’ WHIP at almost 2 leaves something to be desired. Cy Sneed has impressed the most of the younger pitchers, but appears to be more of a set up man.

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Because of this, I believe Brad Peacock to be the one currently leading the race to get that final rotation spot. We’ll just have to see how the rest of camp plays out. Framber Valdez is still in the competition as well but his play hasn’t necessarily inspired confidence yet this Spring Training.

There are still plenty of things to figure out in regards to the bullpen, as well. Ryan Pressly is a bullpen ace and will perfectly bridge the gap to Osuna. Hector Rondon is battling through some rust. Beyond them, roles are wide open, especially as the team is making sure they can fill Joe Smith‘s shoes after his injury.