The Astros have an on-going battle for centerfield entering the season.
Right now, Chas McCormick looks to be the incumbent who will take the field opening day. But Dusty Baker has talked about how much he loves Jose Siri’s energy and would rather have someone make mistakes aggressively than try to teach them an aggressive nature.
Since the departure of George Springer, the Astros have tried Myles Straw, Chas McCormick, Jake Meyers and now Jose Siri has entered the mix.
Not speaking from personal experience, but from what I’ve gathered ball players like to know where they stand on the team. When can they be expected to be penciled in and if they are a starter or role player off the bench.
Solidifying roles is huge mentally for preparation day in and day out. Right now the Astros have two players capable of handling center field duties with a third, Jake Meyers, on his way back from injury.
The lack of certainty and experience at the position (All three of Siri, Meyers and McCormick are within their first year of playing at the major league level) leaves the Astros with question marks on who is the best fit and now they will be experimenting going into the season.
There’s nothing to suggest all three players couldn’t develop into the reliable producer the team needs, especially since they’ll be hitting in the bottom third of the order and just need to give decent production (.250-.260 batting average would suffice.)
It will be hard to develop a rhythm though without the regular at-bats. Dusty Baker hopefully makes a commitment sooner rather than later so the team can move forward.
And while shortstop could have made this list, Jeremy Pena is truly an unknown. We don’t know if he will be a weakness, a strength or just enough to keep the team winning. All of these unknowns will soon become clear. Starting tonight.