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Astros Roster Taking Shape

Last Thursday was baseball’s deadline for tendering contracts to arbitration eligible players. Sammy Gervacio was the only unsigned player on the 40-man roster the Astros chose not to tender a deal before Thursday’s deadline. Ed Wade says he will still attempt to sign Gervacio and I think Houston will do what it needs to do to keep the talented young side-arm thrower in the organization. Gervacio suffered injury problems most of 2010 but still projects as a productive major league reliever. Wandy Rodriguez, Hunter Pence, Michael Bourn, Matt Lindstrom, Clint Barmes and Jeff Keppinger were all tendered contracts. I’m going to review how the Astros 25-man roster would most likely look if the season were to start now.

As of now, the positional starters are all but set. It’s going to look a lot like it did last year save for a shortstop this season who may actually hit.

Starters



C Jason Castro (L)
1B Brett Wallace (L)
2B Jeff Keppinger
3B Chris Johnson
SS Clint Barmes
LF Carlos Lee
CF Michael Bourn (L)
RF Hunter Pence

Lineup

L Bourn
R Keppinger
R Pence
R Lee
L Wallace
R Johnson
L Castro
R Barmes

The bench certainly has its question marks. Jason Bourgeois could be on most major league clubs but Houston won’t carry a sixth outfielder. Manzella’s defense all but guarantees him a spot on the 25-man roster but the other infield spot could either be Maysonet or Angel Sanchez. Adding a left-handed hitting utility man for the bench would be a great sign. I’d like to see someone like an Eric Hinske type, who just signed with Atlanta.

Bench

OF Brian Bogusevic (L)
OF Jason Michaels
INF Edwin Maysonet
SS Tommy Manzella
C Humberto Quintero

Wandy should have a long-term deal by 2012 when he goes to free agency. The rotation seems set with Wesley Wright filling a long-relief/spot starter role. However, if Ed Wade can land another good starter this winter, which I fully expect him to exhaust his possibilities, Figueroa would fill that role and make Wesley more of a left-handed specialist. That’s probably the best option. Tim Byrdak and Gustavo Chacin were both out-righted earlier this week so the only left-handed relievers on the 40-man roster right now are Fernando Abad and Wesley Wright. Unless Houston finds a talented lefty during the winter meetings, Abad and Wright should both break camp with the big league club.

Rotation

RHP Brett Myers
LHP Wandy Rodriguez
RHP Bud Norris
LHP J.A. Happ
RHP Nelson Figueroa

Bullpen

RHP Brandon Lyon
RHP Matt Lindstrom
RHP Wilton Lopez
RHP Alberto Arias
LHP Wesley Wright
LHP Fernando Abad
RHP Mark Melancon

Final Cuts

OF Jason Bourgeois
SS Angel Sanchez
RHP Jeff Fulchino

Stay tuned to Climbing Tal’s Hill as I will update this post frequently as Ed Wade and the Astros continue to shape their roster. This series is simply to give you an idea of how the team is looking for 2011.

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Tags: Ed Wade Hot Stove Houston Astros Roster

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