Cleat Geeks

162 Days…and Very Bright Astros Future

joemusgroveOn Thursday, September 29th the Astros were knocked out of the playoffs, when the Orioles blanked the Toronto Blue Jays, 4-0.  Its rough rather tough being knocked out of the playoffs rather than seeing the Astros moving on to the post season.  It’s been hard for me….as it has taken this long for me to speak of it. Many Astros fans would agree that the reason it is hard was because last season we made it to the post-season.

But really, (as I slowly start focusing on the light) Astros fans shouldn’t stress it.  Yeah, its tough not moving on to October, but we got a great group of guys on our roster.  This year, the Astros called up an enormous about of prospects from the farm system, giving so many their chance at their dream in the show.

Joe Musgrove: Joe has proved that he can handle himself on the mound in tough situations without any sign of nervousness.  Joe climbed the farm team ladder real quickly based on his ability to dominate the the strike zone.

Alex Bregman: Alex is the 2nd overall prospect for the Astros. He destroyed AA and continued to destroy in AAA. When he got to the show he struggled just a little bit, but soon found his flow and was able to dominate at the plate. Alex is a strong 3rd baseman and with the off season, I am sure he will come back even stronger.

Photo by: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Photo by: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Chris “Devo” Devenski: Known as the Dragon. Pretty much lives up to that nickname. He has some very sick pitches that can make batters look real foolish. Devo was in the AA system last season (2015), he would get promoted to AAA and pitch in AAA Championship, thus leading the Fresno Grizzlies to their first AAA Championship title. In April of this year he would get sent to Fresno, and was slated to be the opening pitcher for the Grizzlies, but due to a rough start for the Astros pitchers, Devo would be called up a week after opening day. Devo would never get sent back down again. This season, when ever he went to the mound, he did work and he didn’t mess around..he came to deal K’s. Devo is a nice weapon, because he can pitch out of the bullpen or you can start him. Ether way, you pretty much know things will not get out of control, because the Dragon knows no fear.

bradyrodgersastrosBrady Rodgers: The guy is straight up H-Town! Brady Rodger was the PCL (Pacific Coast League) Pitcher of the Year and rightly so, his AAA record was 12-4 with an ERA of 2.86. The writing was on the wall as far as his call up status with stats like that. The issue that saw, was that he was red hot when ever he was pitching AAA, but the Astros called him up and put him in the bullpen. There he sat, all the while Fister and Fiers were having issues. Rodgers would get to start at the end of season with rocky results. I want to add, personally I think the Astros made an error not giving him a chance sooner and made even a bigger mistake sitting him in the bullpen. But I am 100% sure that Brady will be training this off-season and in April 2017 for the bullpen, he will be in the starting rotation. I really believe he will be a beast in 2017 for the Astros.

Jon Singleton: Many out there would question me for putting this down, but I am a believer in all who wear the Astros patch on their shoulders. Jon Singleton packs a lot-ALOT of power. He is just like Evan Gattis in that if his bat makes contact with the baseball, the baseball will be sent into the next time zone. I would definitely love to see him in Spring Training as a major contender for the 1st Base starting spot. Defensively, he is very, very sharp. Offensively he has struggled a bit. BUT, I would really love to Jon Singleton come back to Houston, and I would love to see him show up all the haters out there. Call me crazy, but I think this would be awesome. Again, I am firm believer in rooting for the guy who is in a slump, because when he comes back, he comes back big! Side Note: Watching him in AAA was fun, because he liked to put baseballs in orbit, with his moonshot home runs! To me , he kinda symbolized what I expected a Fresno Grizzly to look like!

On that note of Gattis, am sure the Astros will resign Jason Castro, but I really love seeing Evan Gattis behind the plate. I really feel he does better batting wise when he is playing a position, rather than platooning role as a DH. I really would love to see more of “El Oso Blanco” catching next season.

I am hoping next season Lance McCullers can stay healthy and the CY Young version of Dallas Keuchel returns. These 2 Astros Aces bring a lot to the mound and when they are in prime form, take a lot of pressure off our bullpen.

talshillFinally, a change in the cosmetic sense for the Astros. The end of the 2016 marked the end of Tal’s Hill. That little hill of grass in deep center field….you know…the one with the flag pole in the field of play. The Astros will be demolishing the hill and moving center field in closer. Center field will shrink from 436ft to 409ft.

In the hills place, will be more seating and restaurants. Personally, I had no feelings ether way about the hill. The only real history we have with the hill, since its creation, was an incident in 2003 involving the Brewers Richie Sexson. He would become the only player ever to hit the flag pole on the fly. Gave him a triple, when he thought it was a home run, expains why he got a triple (he pretty much jogged around the bases thinking he had a home run).

I really see the renovation of Tal’s Hill, a fresh start for us Astros fans. They are moving out the old, and bringing in the new. We have a lot to look forward to in 2017.  I am sure the Astros will wheel and deal during the off season to better strengthen our team. But you gotta remember that Things will be ok, you just gotta breathe and remember, we still got a very good team!

Personally, I will can’t wait for the season to start again! We got a really bright Future!!!




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