Astros Rotation Taking Shape

This morning, the Astros released veteran RHP, Livan Hernandez. This comes after also releasing veterans Zach Duke and Jack Cust and reassigning several top prospects to the minor leagues. Duke was scooped up off waivers by the Nationals while Cust signed a minor league deal with the Yankees. The Astros rotation is starting to take shape with each  release/reassignment made. The top two spots have already been set with Wandy Rodriguez and Bud Norris, but the next three are up for grabs.

My guess is J.A. Happ, Kyle Weiland and Lucas Harrell will each fill out the rest of the rotation respectively. I believe Harrell will beat out Lyles and Lyles will be reassigned to AAA, Oklahoma City. Lyles still has options remaining and Harrell does not, but Lyles could still use some seasoning in the minors. He will join Paul Clemens in the Oklahoma City rotation as they will be the first two staring pitchers called up if a current starter is injured or struggling. Also, Harrell has just flat out pitched better than Lyles. Harrell has a 2.16 ERA stretched across 16.2 innings while Lyles has a 6.32 ERA stretched across 15.2 innings. As I said, this is just a guess as Harrell could also be used as our long reliever and Lyles could win a spot in the rotation, but, if they are truly going by statistics and performance in Spring Training, then Lucas Harrell should win the fifth starting rotation spot. So far this Spring Training, the Astros seem to be making their roster moves based on performance, which they should be, so I see no reason they would stop now.

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Tags: Bud Norris J.A. Happ Jordan Lyles Kyle Weiland Livan Hernandez Lucas Harrell New York Yankees Paul Clemens Wandy Rodriguez Washington Nationals Zach Duke

  • astrosince1975

    I was shocked to hear that Livan was released. And I must say I think it is a bad move. Not only is he better than Happ, now the kids are going to take some serious lumps. This is a bad team and losing a ton of games can’t be good for the development of our young pitchers.
    I have to wonder if there isn’t something more to this. We know about Livan’s financial troubles. Maybe that had something to do with it. I can’t believe the Astros would rather save a few bucks than give Lyles and company more time to develop.
    I had hoped we might be able to win a few games this year while building for future success, The addition of a few veterans to guide and protect the youngsters looked like a good plan. Now it looks like we will be going with all of the kids, including both Rule 5 picks. One thing’s for sure- the youth movement is in full swing.

  • TBOHblog

    “Not only is he better than Happ, now the kids are going to take some serious lumps. This is a bad team and losing a ton of games can’t be good for the development of our young pitchers.”
    Completely agree.  I liked the idea of Livian soaking up losses like a giant sponge and keeping the young guns from being crushed emotionally.

  • LEXthePEX

    Pretty shocked, like most everyone else. I thought Livan would take up the innings eater role from Myers. After Wandy got dealt he could have been pretty valuable but I guess they liked what they’ve seen from Lyes and Harrell to force the release.