3 players the Astros Gave Up on Too Soon

Houston Astros v Los Angeles Angels
Houston Astros v Los Angeles Angels / Sean M. Haffey/GettyImages
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Cionel Perez
Toronto Blue Jays v Baltimore Orioles - Game Two / G Fiume/GettyImages

No. 2: LHP Cionel Pérez

Unlike the Lofton scenario, this one is still playing out right before our eyes. Pérez made a total of 20 appearances for the Astros between 2018, 2019 and 2020 and never displayed enough on the mound to warrant being kept around.

However, 20 appearances in three years may not have been enough for him. Maybe the Astros should've held out just a bit longer. He spent 2021 with the Reds and had a 6.38 ERA in 24 innings, but it's what he did with the Orioles last year that really make this one sting.

In 66 appearances, Pérez had a breakout season with the O's, going 7-1 with a sparkling 1.40 ERA and 2.80 FIP with a 287 ERA+, meaning he was 187 percent above league-average on the season. He struck out 55 batters in 57+ innings, functioning more as a groundball pitcher than anything else, but also allowed just two home runs all year.

In the upcoming season, Pérez figures to once again be an important part of this Orioles' bullpen as they look to be contenders for the second consecutive season.