Astros: Young arms shed light on “big picture”
By Clint Irle
The “big picture” is upon us as David Paulino and Francis Martes continue to develop their skills at the major league level for the Astros.
These young pitchers are learning alongside one of the best offenses in Astros history.
They’ve had been given the opportunity to show their stuff, and develop into the pitchers the organization saw them as apart of the “Big Picture”.
The Young Guns
David Paulino has come along way from having Tommy John Surgery in 2013. Standing at 6’7″, Paulino is able to create a release point about seven feet when delivering a pitch, generating a strong descending angle which the ball crosses the hitting area. He is able to mix this with a solid breaking ball, which makes him all the more capable of getting outs. At 23, Paulino is growing into his talent and will have much more to show us.
Francis Martes, the top prospect in the Astros farm system, has shown great tenacity and power on the mound. He is 2-0 in two starts with the Astros, showing us he is every bit of what we see in him. His attributes are comparable to Lance McCullers, Jr., as both are very emotional players. However, they both have great stuff to silence hitters.
Both Paulino and Martes post ERAs above 5 (5.04 and 5.02 respectively), but it is what they are learning that is truly to light at the end of this tunnel. They will make mistakes, they will frustrate us because we know how good both will become. However, this is a process. Paulino and Martes are more than capable of producing quality starts at the big league level.
We have to keep in mid the inevitable truth which faces all teams, that is players who become free agents. In 2019, Dallas Keuchel and Charlie Morton will become unrestricted free agents (UFA’s).
In 2020, Collin McHugh, Mike Fiers and Will Harris will hit the free agency market as well, also UFAs. This is not easy to process. As the Astros are not the biggest market as far as team and salary space, some guys will be moving on.
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This team is 50-24, supported by a great fan base and clicking on all cylinders offensively. There is no better time than now to continue to develop the future of our Astros pitching staff.
***Statistics courtesy of MLB.com***