Astros Rumors

If the Astros Will Trade a Starter, Who Should it Be?

facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
4 of 5
Next
OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - JULY 27: Cristian Javier #53 of the Houston Astros pitches against the Oakland Athletics at RingCentral Coliseum on July 27, 2022 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA - JULY 27: Cristian Javier #53 of the Houston Astros pitches against the Oakland Athletics at RingCentral Coliseum on July 27, 2022 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images) /

Cristian Javier

Javier is also hard to trade because he has had a big breakout season. However, he doesn’t come without flaws and is in the midst of a less than impressive stretch (4.56 ERA, 7 HR allowed in July). That said, his season stats are quite impressive: he has a 3.26 ERA, a 2.79 xERA, 3.39 FIP, and 1.06 WHIP in 88.1 innings. He has made a complete transition to the rotation since starting in the bullpen in April.

The strikeouts have always been there for Javier, and this season, he has taken that to a new level. His 12.3 K/9 is among the best in baseball, and he has done a great job decreasing the number of walks he is allowing in comparison to last year (3.6 BB/9, down 1.1 from 2021). One of his problems a year ago was allowing big-time hits against his fastball, an issue that has resurfaced amidst his struggles in July. During his torrid stretch in June, however, he was unhittable no matter what pitch he threw, earning the trust of his coaching staff to pitch out of the rotation thanks to his 13-strikeout effort in the Astros’ combined no hitter at New York.

He was on par with the game’s elite through the first 3 months of the season, and while he has not been the same over the past couple of weeks, the improvements he made over the offseason have gone a long way. His ERA is down roughly 30 points, and his FIP is down over 100 points from a year ago. As well, his xwOBA from July of this year only is .260, which is still above league average and indicates that aside from the home runs, he has still been doing a lot of things right.

The question with Javier has always been harnessing his stuff. A season ago, the walks and home runs he gave up arguably outweighed the amount of hitters he struck out, and while that has not been the case this season, this month has been a cautionary tale as to the price the Astros pay if his command is just a little bit off. Javier differs from Garcia (and to a lesser extent, Urquidy) in the sense that his highs and lows are extreme – is his upside worth the stretches like the one he’s in now?

facebooktwitterreddit