Your 2016 Houston Astros Will Win the World Series According to SI.
Houston Astros fans were in the middle of a rebuilding mode nicknamed the process by GM Jeff Luhnow. The Astros told fans to be patient with them through several years of losing, but they explained that the goal was to rebuild the team through the minor leagues. There were promises of a bright future that would offset the years of losing 100 plus games, but some fans lost interest in baseball. The Astros became token radio segments on the radio and back page news for most fans.
Then something happened, the minor league teams started to improve with the Astros having one of the best farm systems after a few years of having the worst systems after the end of the Drayton McLane era. People started to notice what the Astros were doing and that they would soon reap the rewards of their efforts. Sports Illustrated saw what the Astros were doing and declared the Astros, in 2014, the winner of the 2017 World Series.
You remember that cover, and it had George Springer on the cover in the Astros retro rainbow uniform, it will be forever engraved in your memory. Astros fans everywhere rejoiced, because of the efforts of Luhnow and his posse, the Astros fans were led to believe that by 2017, the Astros would once again be relevant.
This week’s Talking Stros
Before the 2015 season, after the Springer SI cover was released, Astros fans would have been excited to reach .500. With the hire of A.J. Hinch, a few shrewd moves by Luhnow, and the development of some of the top prospects, the Astros were fast forwarded to the future where the Astros are good again.
Not only were they winning, but they were making it fun to win with the personalities on the team. Baseball was re-emerging in Houston with the excitement with this club. Carlos Correa is a once in a lifetime type player with Jose Altuve and Springer forming one of the best tops of the orders in baseball.
The Astros have caught the eye of the writers at SI again as they were featured on one of the four regional covers previewing the season. It proclaims that the Astros will have ‘lift off’ in 2016, a year earlier than they had projected in the original cover from 2014. The magazine cover features a goofy looking Correa, Dallas Keuchel front and center, as well as Altuve sitting on a crate of baseballs.
These three players are not the only good players on this team, but the represent the players who are on most people’s Top-100 lists around the nation. You have to wonder how Springer, who was the main focus on the first cover in 2014, felt about not being included this time around. I’m not sure why they did not include him in his Texans helmet, but Springer is one of the reasons people watch the Astros to see him play.
The other teams that were featured on the cover were the Cubs, Mets, and Giants. It is interesting that the Astros were the only American League team featured on the regional covers. Let’s forget the SI cover jinx and the fact that the Indians were featured last year and finished the year at .500. The Astros are too good and have depth at most every position on the team to worry about a jinx, and they just need to play ball the way they know how to remain successful.
I got my 2016 season tickets, how about you? I’m still waiting for the World Champion Royals’ cover, should the Royals fans be slighted that they were excluded?