At this point, watching games has been reduced to expecting the worst and hoping for the best. The good part, August 1st is just around the corner and change is coming. Quite a bit of change to be exact, given the amount of turnover the club has already experienced. Actually that date has been on my radar even before the club started to trot out a AA lineup on a constant basis. I knew that by that day, the club would look completely different and we’d experienced a massive turnover. I didn’t know we’d be seeing this bad a brand of baseball which has made my anticipation even greater.
So who will be added to the team? We know Brett Wallace has been called up and rightfully so. I’m still not sure I’ve heard a valid reason for him not to have been up sooner but that is not relevant any longer. Jimmy Paredes is the other AAA player that seems the most logical to get a call up. The issue with Paredes is that he plays 2nd base now and that position is taken. Paredes can play multiple positions but it seems the Astros have decided he is a 2nd baseman which leads to a couple of conclusions. Either they love the depth and trade value or Altuve isn’t as untouchable as people have made him out to be. Either way, expect Jimmy in the big leagues with someone by next week. Brandon Barnes seems like another logical choice too, especially with the Astros’ horrible OF play that is on display nightly. Newly acquired Rudy Owens seems like another logical choice especially with a couple of pitchers being shipped out. After that, not particularly sure who comes up and who stays on the farm.
Now what will be left over come 2:00? Great question, if I don’t say so myself, because I honestly don’t know. I think Luhnow is still planning on a busy few hours before the deadline. I think Jose Altuve is the closest thing to a lock to stay with the Astros but I wouldn’t bet much money on that. Jed Lowrie, Bud Norris and Wilton Lopez have the most remaining value of the remaining group. Had Lowrie not sprained his ankle, he would have been much more popular right now but even as is, teams are calling. Bud Norris’ recent resurgence has helped his value and could make a deal possible but it would still be selling rather low, so I’d wait until the Winter. Wilton Lopez is the most certain to go and I think he will go. Lopez has had a very good career in Astros’ pinstripes and red which will make him a great find for a team. I think a deal will present itself to Jeff that will make it very difficult for him to say no. Besides that, Scott Moore, Matt Downs and Chris Snyder could all go in minor deals but they won’t bring back much.
Reality is that Luhnow has thrown more than one curve ball at Stros’ fans this month and I wouldn’t expect anything less today.