There is no place for the Astros’ payroll to go but up. Quite frankly, I’m not sure it is possible to field a major league team for less than $13 million. And if there were any doubts, all you had to do was watch the Astros play this season.
As a fan base, we have been jilted and have scars from the last few seasons. We know the future is bright, but we are well within our rights to be skeptical.
But, this has the potential to be a very exciting offseason. At the very least, I don’t think that the Astros will be shopping in the bargain aisle this winter as the did last year.
Of course we also have the issues regarding the Comcast situation swirling around. However per by Brian McTaggart’s report, according to Jim Crane it does not appear to be an issue.
“I would say [the payroll] could go to $50-60 [million] very quickly, and if this [TV situation] gets resolved, it could go higher,” Crane said. “We’re not going to make a move unless it fits into the plan, and we’re not going to rush the plan. Jeff’s got a very systematic formula and we do have some good players coming up. [If] you add three or four key positions and bring in a couple of guys that are ready, this team is pretty competitive pretty quickly with the starting pitching we’ve got. We’re deep in pitching.”
As much as I want to believe Crane here, I am not holding my breath. At the same time, the Astros are not going to be a playoff team next year anyway, so progress is all we truly are looking for.
I am not going to consider this offseason a success simply on how much money the Astros spend. That doesn’t mean I don’t want them to spend money, but I want Houston to spend wisely. The spending should fit the long term mission that has been established and not interfere with the progression of the young players. With Jeff Luhnow in charge though, we should be fine there.
The Astros have a plan, and we are beginning to see it put into action. A new closer, a veteran starting pitcher, some bullpen help, and a proven power hitter could go a long way towards getting Houston back on track.
Now let’s see Crane deliver.