Comparing 2022 Houston Astros to other Golden Era teams
2019 Houston Astros: 107-55 (.660 Winning percentage)
Franchise best record. AL West Division Champions. Best record in all of baseball. 920 Runs Scored. 640 runs allowed. End of Season: Lost World Series in seven games to Washington Nationals.
Nothing displays how much a team on a hot streak matters more than your overall talent. When a team is feeling it, there’s really no stopping them.
That was the case with the 2019 Astros as they faced a Washington Nationals team that caught fire in October going from Wild Card entry to World Series champion.
Despite the disappointing result, this Astros team was stacked and had one of the best seasons in the history of Major League baseball. There are so many eye popping statistics from this team it’s hard to say which was most impressive. The one that displays the balanced two sided attack of this team most accurately is that they were the first team ever to lead the league in strikeouts while also striking out the least offensively.
As great as 2022 has been, this 2019 team is still the most talented Astros team ever assembled. Perhaps it’s because we don’t know the full trajectory of the careers of Framber Valdez, Luis Garcia, Jose Urquidy and Cristian Javier. Perhaps the Astros have two future hall of famers in at least two of those pitchers.
But the 2019 Astros had three future hall of famers in their rotation between Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole and then the addition of Zack Greinke. Verlander and Cole finished one and two in the Cy Young voting and it was close. They both were dominating at absurd levels with Verlander going 21-6 with a 2.58 ERA and an obscene 0.803 WHIP with 300 strikeouts over 223 innings.
Cole was just as filthy going 20-5 with a 2.50 ERA, 0.895 WHIP and posting 326 strikouts over 212.1 innings. For what it’s worth Zack Greinke made 10 starts for the Astros going 8-1 with a 3.02 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP. Which it should be noted that those numbers are also very good.
This 2022 team has pitching that rivals 2019, but this is the Astros team that had one of the best offenses ever assembled. Alex Bregman finished second in MVP voting receiving 13 first place votes, just four behind the winner Mike Trout.
The team also boasted Jose Altuve and Yuli Gurriel, two guys who each hit career highs at 31 home runs a piece. They added free agent Michael Brantley to play left field alongside George Springer in center field.
The team of course had Carlos Correa providing solid production from shortstop and as if that wasn’t enough they unfairly added Yordan Alvarez at designated hitter who lit the league up so much he was the unanimous rookie of the year receiving all 30 first place votes.
The 2022 team is great no doubt about it. But the 2019 team was the best Astros team ever assembled and fell just a game short of sealing their fate as the greatest Astros team of all-time regardless of who came after them. 2022 can potentially take that title of greatest Astros team of all-time with a World Series win.
But until then the 2019 team is still the best.