MLB Network rankings clearly prove they love the Astros heading into 2024

The Astros look strong going into 2024, but nothing is a given.
Championship Series - Texas Rangers v Houston Astros - Game Seven
Championship Series - Texas Rangers v Houston Astros - Game Seven / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages
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There's no denying the Houston Astros are loaded with star-level talent. On offense, Jose Altuve, Yordan Alvarez, Alex Bregman, Kyle Tucker, and even Jose Abreu have all been among the best players at their position at one point and are household names. On the pitching side, Justin Verlander needs no introduction, and Framber Valdez, Josh Hader, and Ryan Pressly are all well-established commodities on the mound.

Assembling this much talent on one roster is actually pretty remarkable when you think about it. A roster having a few key guys isn't that unusual, but Houston has managing to essentially put together an All-Star team that they can run out there each year is a testament to the work done in their player development department. The results speak for themselves as the Astros have gone to seven straight ALCS with this group.

Houston is looking very strong once again heading into the 2024 season. Each year, MLB Network makes their rankings of the top 10 players at each position and Houston had the most players on said lists with eight top 10 guys at their respective positions.

MLB Network solidifies Astros' outlook for 2024 MLB season

The Astros were able to finish with one player more on these top 10 lists than the Braves, Dodgers, and Phillies, all of whom managed to place seven players of their own. Given that all three of those teams are perennial playoff contenders that have made deep postseason runs recently, one would think that this portends good things for Houston in 2024.

However, baseball is not like the NBA where you can just construct a super team and watch the wins roll in. Baseball is very much a team sport where depth matters and every single roster spot can have a big impact on how a season goes. Just last season, the Mets tried to buy their way into the World Series. Everyone loved their roster and the moves they made, but New York proceeded to promptly fall on their faces.

Let's put this another way. No one in their right mind would be itching to face the defending World Series champion Texas Rangers with the season on the line right now. As painful as it is to admit, that is a very good baseball team over there in Arlington, capable of beating any team out there. How many players did they place on these top 10 lists going into 2024? Just three with Corey Seager, Marcus Semien and Adolis Garcia getting nods.

At the end of the day, these are just fun lists that are looking for engagement to start debates among baseball fans. Such rankings are far from perfect, and as the Astros (and especially the Mets) found out last year, just because a team may have the best roster on paper doesn't mean much if they don't go out and prove it on the field.

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