Houston Astros’ pitcher, Bud Norris, needs to have a bounce back season in 2013.
He was a very mediocre pitcher in 2012, posting a 4.65 ERA just a season after posting a 3.77 ERA in 2011. If you look at Norris’ home/road splits, he was a completely different pitcher at Minute Maid Park compared to when he was away, which is a sign of immaturity.
In 11 games at the beautiful Minute Maid Park, Norris went 4-1, with a 1.77 ERA. However, when Norris was pitching on the road, he went 3-12 with a 6.94 ERA in 18 games. Obviously, Astros manager Bo Porter and pitching coach Doug Brocail will need to work with Norris and get him to build off of what he did at home last season. I have no doubt in my mind that Porter will get the best out of Norris, as well as the rest of the Astros.
It is tough to predict what Norris will do in 2013. A lot of people, including myself, think that Norris would be much more successful in the National League rather than in the American League. The AL West is going to be tough for any pitcher, as there are many good hitters in the division.
If you were to ask me, I think Norris is much more suitable in a late-game reliever role. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Astros go down that route, especially since the team’s bullpen is really questionable, and they have an up-and-coming prospect named Jarred Cosart looking to join the team at some point.
With that said, I think Norris will stay in the rotation for the Astros this season – that is, if he isn’t traded away from Houston. If Norris stays in the rotation, look for him to try to build off his home numbers from last season.