The Astros have to be feeling good that they let Carlos Correa go
Okay, this one is cheating a bit because Carlos Correa left the Astros after the 2021 season. However, his current situation is very instructive in looking at how signing guys to long-term deals can still be a huge mistake even if things look good for said player in the beginning.
When Correa signed a one year deal with the Minnesota Twins after very publicly voicing his displeasure with what the Astros were willing to offer him, a lot of Houston fans were upset that the franchise let a guy go who was among the best hitting shortstops in the league who also had an absolute cannon of an arm at short. Those fears seemed to be confirmed when he posted a 140 wRC+ season with the Twins and looked primed for a huge payday in free agency.
He nearly got one from the Giants, but San Francisco quickly had some pretty big problems with his physical and Correa's mega contract ended up falling through. The Mets tried to swoop in but that deal, too, fell through. Correa finally ended up back with the Twins on a six year, $200 million deal. What was the Twins' reward for bringing Correa back? So far, not very much with Correa slashing .212/.287/.403 with a 91 wRC+ so far in 2023.
Correa may end up being just fine, but it sure looks like the Astros were smart to not commit big money to him right now.
The Astros were right about Trey Mancini
Trey Mancini is one of the game's best feel good stories as his return from colon cancer was nothing short of remarkable. He was good enough in his return to the Orioles that Houston traded for him to bolster their offense during the 2022 season in a three team deal at the trade deadline.
Mancini struggled quite a bit with Houston after the trade and instead of ignoring that lack of production and betting on his previous track record, Houston decided to let him walk and he signed a two year deal with the Cubs before the 2023 season. It looks like the Astros were right to let him go as he is slashing .238/.310/.354 in 61 games with Chicago. We do hope that Mancini ends up proving us and the Astros wrong, though, given everything he has been through.