Houston Astros Should Look Within for Answers at First
Sep 25, 2015; Miami, FL, USA; Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman (5) connects for a base hit during the first inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
The Houston Astros had their problems with first base in 2015. The turnstile of players and platoons utilized by manager A.J. Hinch was comical at times. Still, the team was productive if inconsistent on offense. Now, there is talk that the Atlanta Braves tear down could culminate with them shipping off Freddie Freeman for a treasure trove of prospects. Of course, pundits and short-sighted Astros diehards are all over the obvious match for both teams. I argue that there are several reasons not to make that deal from Houston’s standpoint.
When the Astros jumped out to a hot start in 2015 and claimed a stronghold of the American League West, I tweeted general manager Jeff Luhnow “Freddie Freeman – He can be had.” Of course, I was joking. First of all, I was under the impression that Freeman would be untouchable from the Braves standpoint because I envisioned a shorter rebuilding plan for Atlanta.
Also, we had Chris Carter coming off a 37 homer year and at any moment, Jonathan Singleton would be recalled from his major league banishment to claim his rightful place as the everyday first sacker. Yes, I realize my crystal ball was misaligned. Would I have been ecstatic if Luhnow would have been able to pull off a deal for Freeman in June? Absolutely.
However, that deal did not go down in June. Freeman suffered through being on a bad Braves team. The Astros had a miserable first base platoon through the entire year and post season, and they went home in the first round of the playoffs (Wild Card Playoff is not considered a round). Now, it’s December, and we’re looking towards 2016, not October 2015. That is why I present the following reasons not to make the deal for Freeman now.
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