The Astros’ starting rotation.
With the main issue out of the way, we can talk about the less-worrisome weaknesses that the Astros have. The team has been sporting a six-man rotation as of late, consisting of Justin Verlander, Framber Valdez, Luis Garcia, Jose Urquidy, Jake Odorizzi and Christian Javier.
All of these pitchers have a sub 5.00 ERA, but Urquidy has struggled a bit. However, Odorizzi suffered a horrible injury Monday night, after finally getting his season together and being absolutely lights out in his last few starts.
My heart and prayers are with him, as it is painful to know he is injured after all that’s happened to him this year. Nonetheless, this leaves the Astros with a question mark for sure. With the status of Lance McCullers Jr. being somewhat unknown and with Verlander’s age, I think it is safe to assume that one of these two guys is going to be out with injury come October.
I hope for the best, and if they are there, the rotation is just that much better. However, if only one of them is there, that most likely leaves you with a postseason rotation of Verlander/McCullers, Valdez, Garcia and Urquidy. Personally, I think the Astros need one more quality starter in that rotation.
The problem is I do not know if the Astros have enough to trade away for a superstar guy, while also being able to take on his contract. I think the better solution is to roll with these four and just beef up the bullpen as much as possible.
This means they most likely will have to trade at least one or two of Chas McCormick, Jose Siri, Jake Meyers and Pedro Leon, as well as some other prospects. At the end of the trade deadline, I believe it is imperative for the club to have the best bullpen in the league, poised for an October run.
This way, if one of the starters begins to struggle, manager Dusty Baker has no issue with pulling him, knowing very well that the bullpen will make up the slack.