#3: Bring your A game to work.
May 16, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Astros manager A.J. Hinch (14) pats starting pitcher Scott Feldman (46) after he was pulled from the game in the seventh inning against the Toronto Blue Jays at Minute Maid Park. Astros won 6 to 5. Mandatory Credit: Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports
Starters need to go deep into games
By: Eric Huysman
This was not really a weakness for the Astros overall where they finished fifth in the MLB in quality starts. A quality start is when a pitcher goes, at least, six innings giving up three earned runs or less. The reason this is a resolution for 2016 is because they struggled to find the number five pitcher going through Roberto Hernandez, Asher Wojciechowski, and Dan Straily.
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None of these guys were really reliable, but this year they appear to have a rookie pitcher or the veteran Scott Felman in the fifth spot for 2016. Last season. Feldman was the second starter following 2014 where he was the defacto ace of the young Astros staff. Now, the fifth starter will be counted on to eat up innings behind the foursome of Dallas Keuchel, Collin McHugh, Lance McCullers, and Mike Fiers.
If Feldman is the long guy in the bullpen, he needs to pitch like he is the starter to limit the innings the bullpen has to pitch. Towards the end of the year, the bullpen sprung some leaks due to possible overuse through the year. If the starters can go deeper into games, the bullpen will be fresher.
You are going to have your bad starts, the key for the Astros is to pick the best candidate to start, not the one who is currently on the 40-man roster. There will be injuries throughout the year, so the Astros have to keep the backups ready in Triple-A. The rotation should be a strength of this team.
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