Other relievers on Houston's roster get a lot more press than Phil Maton. That does make some sense as Bryan Abreu, Ryan Pressley, and Hector Neris were all more valuable in terms of fWAR and often just had sexier relief appearances where they mowed through batters in big spots. However, Maton was an absolute workhorse for the Astros out of the bullpen with 3.00 ERA in 68 appearances in 2023.
Maton may have reached his ceiling last season, but he is going to have no shortage of suitors this offseason. The Cardinals have already checked in on him, but they are also pretty busy playing in the deep end of the starting pitching market. Honestly, a reunion with the Astros still feels like the most plausible outcome here. Houston needs relievers, they know exactly what they are getting in Maton, and he shouldn't be prohibitively expensive. Sometimes, the simplest solution is the correct one.
Coming off an amazing 2022 season where he posted a 1.12 ERA and 3.02 FIP, Ryne Stanek had positioned himself for a massive payday this offseason. Unfortunately, he came back to earth in 2023 and his history of command issues and persistent problems with giving up homers is going to hurt his value on the market this offseason.
So far, there isn't any public interest in Stanek, although a guy with his kind of stuff is certainly getting phone calls. Houston probably wants to move on from him as giving up too many baserunners and too many hard hit balls is a bad combination. We'll guess that the Cardinals gobble him as a cheap option with upside that they pivot to after getting their rotation sorted out, although a return to the Rays where he played pretty well to start his career isn't out of the question.