The Astros lock in a key reserve’s salary for the 2018 season.
As the Hot Stove starts to simmer(?) for the Astros, another part of the baseball business is about to step onto the fray.
That’s right; salary arbitration.
The Astros entered Thursday morning with eight players eligible for salary arbitration. This isn’t surprising in the slightest when you remember how much of the roster remains on their initial contracts.
Well, you can now mark your “Unofficial Ultimate Astros Arbitration Tracker” down to seven players following this avoidance of arbitration with Jake Marisnick.
Marisnick, aka #Swoon, and Houston have decided on how much the reserve outfielder will make in 2018. Honestly, $1.9 million for Marisnick is quite good value. By Fangraphs, he was worth $11.4 million last season if you convert his fWAR (1.4) into a dollar figure. And he’s not a free-agent till the conclusion of the 2020 season.
The 26-year old outfielder posted solid numbers in 2017. And Marisnick set a new career-high in home runs with 16. You can thank a revamped swing for that improvement. For example, Marisnick had a 15.9 degree launch angle in 2017. By comparison, he had a 9.2 degree launch angle in 2016. Improvement was made. This revamped swing is a major reason why Marisnick was more valuable last season when compared to past years.
Don’t forget that Marisnick missed the last chunk of the season and postseason due to a thumb injury. His absence necessitated the Cameron Maybin acquisition before the August 31st deadline. A full season from a healthy Marisnick adds another dynamic to Houston.
Looking ahead, the Astros ought to be hopeful in Marisnick’s revamped swing and if it carries forward into next season. If it does, the Astros roster, and lineup, becomes even deeper. That should excite the Astros. And worry opposing teams.
**Statistics and information courtesy of Fangraphs and Baseball Savant**