The empty spots.
The entire starting rotation and starting lineup remain intact. That’s not too bad for Jeff Luhnow. He has four roster spots to play with, and they are all complimentary pieces as opposed to glaring holes or free agent superstars.
BE – EMPTY (Maybin)
BE – EMPTY (Beltran)
RP – EMPTY (Gregerson)
RP – EMPTY (Liriano)
The Astros go into the 2018 off-season with a very familiar shopping list: an elite reliever, left-handed pitching, a left-handed bench bat, and overall hitting depth.
In theory, they could fill all but one of those in-house. Jake Marisnick immediately slides back into the role that Maybin occupied, A.J. Reed can take over as a big lefty bench bat, Tony Sipp is still under contract, Reymin Guduan is a hard-throwing lefty, and there are some exciting outfield prospects in the Astros’ farm system.
Don’t forget about Tony Kemp and Colin Moran, two young left-handed hitters waiting in the wings. Kemp showcased his defensive talents all season long and can play in the infield as well. Moran was tearing up the minors before a freak accident a few days after his call-up kept him out of MLB action for most of 2017.