Predicting the Houston Astros’ 2014 Starting Rotation
Predicting the Houston Astros' 2014 Starting Rotation
No other team in MLB stands in the position that the Houston Astros find themselves in at the start of the 2014 season. Just as the entire team has a ton to prove and nearly nothing to lose, the starting rotation does as well. We could look at stats from last season but that would be completely meaningless. It would be like comparing Spring Training stats to regular season stats and expecting them to be the same.
Last season the starting rotation for the Astros was beginning to take shape. They were preparing and getting ready for the 2014 season all of last year. No other team in the game has done that. It should be no surprise that a team more focused on player development last year than winning lost 100 plus games. All of that could be as different as night and day this season however starting with the pitching rotation.
Not only have they chosen the top young guys from last season's run but they have also added veterans from the outside to help bridge the gap between now and success in the future. All of their best prospects are not ready so they are trying to win more games by making the best team they can without it costing them their promising future. It really is quite an awesome plan and it will be even better if it works.
The starting rotation should be decent this season. They, like the team itself will surprise many people this season I believe. Anyone expecting this 2014 Astros rotation to look and perform like the sum of last year's parts is going to have another thing coming very soon. Take a look at the staff they will put out there. It isn't the best rotation in the league but it shouldn't be the worst either.
5 - Jerome Williams
The back end of the rotation is way up in the air for the Astros but it seems fairly likely that Williams will find himself in one of those positions. He can be a good anchor at the back of the rotation with a bonus to the team if he excels.
4 - Lucas Harrell
This is a bit of a risk because most figure Harrell will land back in the bullpen. He could well end up there but I think the Astros will give him a long look this spring to see if he can make his awesome starts far outnumber his negative ones. If he can then he could be the second or third best starter on this staff. If not then he certainly would not stay long and would be replaced by someone like Brad Peacock.
3 - Jarred Cosart
Cosart has just touched the surface of what he could be for this team. The general feeling from most fans I have spoken to is that Cosart has as good of a chance to be the actual ace of this team as anyone else.
2 - Brett Oberholtzer
The other young starter who could well end up being considered the ace of this staff performance wise is this man right here. His upside is just ridiculous as well. If the Astros get great years from their two and three and a decent showing from their number one man, they are going to make a little noise.
1 - Scott Feldman
Feldman is not a prototypical ace for certain. What he is however is a veteran leader that will be instrumental in setting a tone for the rest of the staff. Their work, habits while working and everything will be affected by Feldman. Even if he won 5 games with an ERA over five he would have been worth the signing. It was a great move for the right reasons. They got exactly the kind of staff leader that they wanted.