Dream Astros starting rotation for the 2024 season

With free agency now open and trades possible at any point in time, let's take a look at the Astros dream rotation for 2024.
Championship Series - Houston Astros v Texas Rangers - Game Three
Championship Series - Houston Astros v Texas Rangers - Game Three / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages
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#5 Shota Imanaga

We said Yoshinobu Yamamoto should be atop the Astros free agent target list. While he very well should, realistically, there is a less than 0% chance the Astros even make a phone call.

The same should not be said for another Japanese pitcher coming to the MLB this season--Shota Imanaga. Imanaga isn 't going to be a franchise-altering ace like Yamamoto, but for a number five, he'd be well worth the price.

Imanaga is incredibly adept at missing bats without losing control. Imanaga struck out 10.6 batters per nine while walking only 1.4, posting a ludicrous 7.83 strikeout-to-walk ratio. While he isn't likely to replicate his 2.66 ERA, that ability of missing bats won't suddenly disappear.

For a #5 in the rotation, that would be a dream. Imanaga is already 30, so he won't command the same money or contract length that Yamamoto will. The Astros would have to pay the posting fee, but Imanaga could likely be had for four-to-five years and between $13-15 million AAV. That feels like a no brainer for the World Baseball Classic hero.