Astros: The Latest Roster Moves
By Cody Poage
The Astros have decided to shake up the 25-man roster following Sunday’s loss to the Boston Red Sox.
After dropping three-of-four to the Red Sox this weekend, the Astros have decided to option outfielder Preston Tucker, recall designated hitter/backup catcher Evan Gattis, and designate Erik Kratz for assignment. There will be another roster move that will be announced at a later point in time.
Well, this is hardly surprising. These were clearly moves to shake up the lineup as both Tucker (49 wRC+) and Kratz (-59 wRC+) have been nonexistent at the plate. Even though Tucker does provide the occasional power (3 HR), it is clear that he isn’t providing the same impact that he did last season when he posted a 100 wRC+ in 323 plate appearances.
Kratz was originally brought in from the San Diego Padres as Max Stassi‘s replacement following the latter’s wrist injury in Spring Training. He only collected two hits in 29 at-bats as the Astros backup catcher. Arguably the most notable moment of Kratz’s short time as an Astro was when he pitched one inning of relief when he allowed three hits and two runs (one earned) in Seattle against the Mariners.
Kratz’s replacement will be Evan Gattis, who has spent the past few weeks preparing for the backup catcher’s role behind starter Jason Castro. Gattis has caught just four games for the Corpus Christi Hooks, but the Astros must feel that he is ready to help the major league squad in that position.
The question now becomes about who the Astros will call up from the minors to take Tucker’s place on the major league roster. Tony Kemp is a popular choice among the Astros faithful as many cite his impressive play with the Fresno Grizzlies this season. And he would allow the Astros more outfield options that can play center field in light of Carlos Gomez and his recent poor play. It would not be shocking to see an outfield configuration of Jake Marisnick, Kemp, and George Springer if that is the case.
Next: Astros' Lineup Top Heavy? Bottom Third of Lineup is Struggling
The Astros are clearly reeling after their series loss to the Red Sox in which Houston had the advantage late in the two previous ball games. We all know how those turned out. And who knows, if the Astros continue down this path we may see more of our favorite minor leaguers being promoted soon.
**Statistics provided by Fangraphs & Baseball-Reference**