Following the Houston Astros‘ pickup of Ryan Jackson and the departure of J.D. Martinez, John Ely and Jake Elmore, the way seemed to be completely cleared for George Springer. Well, yet again the Astros seem intent on putting off Springer’s arrival until the last possible moment.
Instead of adding the MLB-ready Springer, the Astros instead opted to add Luiz Cruz, Domingo Santana and Asher Wojciechowski to the 40-man roster in order to protect them from the Rule 5 Draft. With a roster that now stands at 37, they still have room to add more in the coming days.
Santana touts an impressive minors resume, but he has yet to hit above the double-A level, and his numbers there leave plenty of room for improvement. Last year, Santana hit .252 with 25 home runs. It’s good to see the Astros protecting Santana, given that he has the potential to be a four- to five-tool player.
Wojciechowski could easily make the pro ball club come spring. At 25-years-old, it’s prime time for him to put on the Astros uniform. He may even find himself in contention for a starting rotation spot, depending on who the Astros pursue this off season. Wojo has an impressive 20-13 with a 3.20s ERA in the Astros system, and it was a surprise to see him absent from the Astros roster in the September call-ups.
Now that he’s on the 40-man, however, there’s no excuse to exclude him. Expect to see him suiting up for the Astros on opening day.