Another meaningless loss is in the books for the Astros this Spring Training.
Five games into Spring Training and the Astros are still in the process of working off the rust. Of course, this is of no surprise to anyone. This is Spring Training after all where the results don’t matter.
All that does matter are the players and their preparation for the upcoming season. Despite the 9-5 loss though, there was definitely a silver lining in yesterday’s bout with the Miami Marlins. Or two.
A.J. Reed, for example, hit a solo home run to prove that he is still around.
The first base hopeful will need a strong Spring Training to claim the job over Yulieski Gurriel. Yesterday’s brief, yet positive showing is a good start.
Talking about good starts, well, the Astros didn’t receive one yesterday. Rotation hopeful, Chris Devenski, lasted just 1.1 innings while allowing four earned runs. But you cannot, or should not, take too much stock into this outing. After all, Spring Training has just begun in earnest. Worry not though as Devenski will be given plenty of chances to prove his stuff. Don’t forget that Dallas Keuchel, Lance McCullers, and Collin McHugh are being treated with kid gloves.
We also witnessed the 2017 Spring Training debut of Francis Martes, the Astros top pitching prospect.
The amount the Astros use Martes over the coming weeks will be an interesting storyline to watch. In theory he shouldn’t have much of a chance to make the Opening Day roster. But he could be a realistic mid-season call up depending on how the season unfolds.
Back on a positive note is Tyson Perez, the 27-year old right-handed relief pitcher. In case you didn’t catch Perez, he struck out all three Marlins batters he faced yesterday. Good for him as he works his way back from Tommy John surgery last year.
The bullpen appears set for the 2017 season. There could be an opening though if certain events transpire. And injuries could arise, and it doesn’t hurt to have options. If Perez continues to impress in the coming weeks, he could be one of the team’s first options from the minors when needed.
**Statistics courtesy of MLB.com**