The trade that brought Dexter Fowler in might seem fairly minor but it could be one of the biggest deals the Houston Astros have made. Fowler has a little bit to prove as he gets to camp but that is not because he hasn’t shown what he is capable of. Out of the gate last season, Fowler was a game-changer for the Colorado Rockies. This season he could be the same kind of player for the Astros.
A big deal for Fowler will be to take the spring and find a way to stay consistent and to stay healthy. If he plays 162 games this year, you’re going to see some big numbers from the Astros lead-off guy. That all begins during Spring Training though. Whereas he fizzled and dealt with some injury problems a year ago, the atmosphere around the Astros could help motivate him to find consistency as well.
He will be the lead-off hitter for the Astros but that isn’t to say he won’t have something of a power stroke. As you watch this guy during the spring make sure you note that he is more than just a center fielder with speed. Through the first 26 games in 2013 he had 8 home runs and 15 RBI. A lot of teams would take that kind of performance, along with a .305 average and .411 OBP.
I’m sure the Astros would take it this year just as well. Make no mistake about it; Fowler is not a sure thing for the Astros. He needs to go out this spring and prove what he can do and earn the respect he should already be receiving around the league. If he can establish himself with consistency this spring, he will be an absolute game-changer for the Astros in 2014.