Who Will Be on the Bench for the Astros?

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Sep 7, 2014; Oakland, CA, USA; Houston Astros outfielder Jake Marisnick (6) throws the ball into the infield against the Oakland Athletics in the fifth inning at O.co Coliseum. The Astros defeated the Athletics 4-3. Mandatory Credit: Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

The “Wild Cards”

With the previous two players on the team, along with the starting nine, you are down to two spots to fill out the roster. A lot of it will come down to how many backup infielders and outfielders A.J. Hinch will want on his team.

3B Matt Dominguez: Dominguez went from being the starter to seeing himself in a potential platoon situation. If Matty D is to make this team though, he’ll need to show that he is better than Valbuena, or at least show they only need one outfielder off the bench and not two. What also makes things a little more complicated for Dominguez is the fact that Marwin Gonzalez can play 3B if needed. Everybody will be giving Dominguez a good look this Spring.

OF Alex Presley: A few weeks ago, I would have put Presley in the group above as he was granted $1 million for 2015 to avoid arbitration. A lot has changed with the recent transactions, and now Presley’s role could very well be up in the air knowing that the Astros could very well only have one backup outfielder on the bench.

OF Jake Marisnick: Marisnick must have gone through an emotional roller coaster this January. He went from being the projected starter in LF, to the bench with the Gattis trade, to starting again with the Fowler trade, to now battling for a roster spot with the signing of Colby Rasmus. The former top prospect will have to impress management enough to beat out Presley and the next guy on the list for a spot on the bench.

OF Robbie Grossman: Grossman has had an up-and-down career in an Astros uniform, and he’s going to have to continue what he was doing at the end of 2014 to gain a spot on this roster. A lot of people believe in him, but with only so many spots on the team, he’s going to have to be more consistent.