The Houston Astros Best and Worst Investments

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Sep 24, 2014; Arlington, TX, USA; Houston Astros starting pitcher Scott Feldman (46) throws during the game against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The first name on the list shouldn’t come as much of a surprise: Scott Feldman. Don’t get me wrong, Feldman did a commendable job last season, but pitchers have a harder time accumulating WAR as it is, and with his $10M salary in 2015, his projected negative value makes sense. Reuter has Feldman at a projected WAR of 1.0, which works out to a projected value of $5.5M, and a net loss of -$4.5M.

The next two names won’t make many fans happy, but keep in mind that as hard as it is for starting pitchers to accumulate WAR, it’s even harder for relief pitchers. That’s where Luke Gregerson and Pat Neshek come in. Neshek has a projected WAR of 0.4, which amounts to a projected value of $2.2M. Couple that with his 2015 income of $5.5M, and we’re left with a net projected loss of -$3.3M.

It’s a pretty similar outcome for Gregerson, who is projected at a WAR of 0.5, or a value of $2.75M. Again, that leads to a net loss, but this time of -$3.25M. Gregerson’s WAR last season was 1.7, so the projection has him falling off quite a bit. The same goes for Neshek, who accumulated a 2.3 WAR in 2014.

While the bullpen is projected to be a bad investment, I’m doubting many Astros fans are feeling that way. In this case, it’s not about wins above replacement, but how many leads make it to the ninth inning.

Next: Roster Predictions: Starting Pitchers

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