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2020 astros offseason

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Houston should make a strong offer for Cole but put a deadline on it. Boras is going to play every bidder off each other and while you’re waiting for the Cole decision, you may miss out on other options. 
 

but to be honest given Coles weird comments last night, I don’t think he wants to stay with Houston.  Didn’t even want to acknowledge being an Astro 20 minutes after the game. 

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Groom Verlander for a coaching position?  You guys are insane.  He’s making $30m a season and married to a supermodel.  He’s not going to be on the road for 200 days a year making $200k coaching a position group.  
 

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Things are even brighter on the pitching side. Righty Jose Urquidy may lose his rookie eligibility; he has been quite effective of late in the major league rotation, posting a 34/6 K/BB ratio in 32 innings. Cristian Javier, 22, struck out 130 in 85 upper-minor-league innings this season. Nivaldo Rodriguez and Luis Garcia have also been dominant but haven’t yet made the key leap to Double-A. Garcia whiffed an amazing 108 batters in 65 2/3 High-A innings.

The Triple- and Double-A pitching staffs were chock full of interesting arms like Brandon Bielak, Enoli Paredes, Bryan Abreu, Tyler Ivey and Brett Conine. I’ll go out on a limb and say that all of those guys will pitch in the big leagues. With the lively ball now being used at the Triple-A level, ERAs can be very misleading. Focus on the K rates.

Part of a story written after we made the Grienke trade about the state of our farm system. I just copied the info about pitchers. With Strom's magic touch, we might not drop off too much losing Cole. 

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15 minutes ago, Hank Chinaski said:

Oh, I think they'll remain in contention...but the rotation depends almost entirely on older guys' ability to remain healthy and effective as they approach 40. 

Not sure how excited I am about the organizational pitching prospects...Whitley has been a train wreck. Bukauskas and Martin are gone. Most of the guys in the minors who figure to be closest had pretty bad years in 2019. But you're right, we don't know how this will play out yet. 

The offense will remain strong, not worried about that. It could be better with a full season of Alvarez and Tucker, and maybe Correa will miss less time. Although it was historically good this year, so topping that is a stretch. 

I'm not saying the window is closed; just that the rotation figures to fall a bit, and doesn't appear to have an immediate solution. 

Our home grown pitching prospects worry me a lot.

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2 minutes ago, David Dennison said:

Our home grown pitching prospects worry me a lot.

Same. The most highly-rated guys in the org were pretty awful this season (based on scouting the box scores, which certainly isn't perfect). 

And the club hasn't produced a legit home-grown starter since McCullers in 2015. Maybe Uquidy can be that guy, but that remains to be seen. 

Edited by Hank Chinaski

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1 minute ago, Murfdogg21 said:

What kind of compensatory pick do they get if they give Cole a qualifying offer he’d never consider and signs elsewhere?

2nd round, I think.

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58 minutes ago, TexArcher said:

Yeah.  Their rotation is exceptional and their bats got red hot at the right time. 

And JV was obviously tiring throughout all of October.  His fastball velocity was down 2-4 mph and he was missing spots more often than usual. 

One of the keys to next season will be managing his workload better so he has more left at the end.  223 IP this year at his age was just too much.  So pull him an inning early in every start next year.  And if it costs us a couple of regular season games, who cares?

That is the wrong way to manage his workload. If you pull him early then you are burning up the bullpen. The real reason the Astros lost to Washington was the bullpen was dreadful, Rondon was the only relievers that didn't give up a run. 

Starting pitching had a 3.51 ERA

Relievers had a 5.73

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2 minutes ago, Hank Chinaski said:

Same. The most highly-rated guys in the org were pretty awful this season. 

And the club hasn't produced a legit home-grown starter since McCullers in 2015. Maybe Uquidy can be that guy, but that remains to be seen. 

Urquidy showed a lot in the WS.  I also think he showed great potential during the season.  I don't think he'll ever be a number 1 starter, but could easily be a number 2.

James is super frustrating in a Wild Thing Vaughn way.  Still hoping he can turn the corner too.

Whitley has been meh so far. 

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7 minutes ago, HtownHorn said:

That is the wrong way to manage his workload. If you pull him early then you are burning up the bullpen. The real reason the Astros lost to Washington was the bullpen was dreadful, Rondon was the only relievers that didn't give up a run. 

Starting pitching had a 3.51 ERA

Relievers had a 5.73

It's not the wrong way to manage his workload.  You cut his IP by 30-40 AND you upgrade the bullpen.

The bullpen upgrade is key no matter what.  If we go in with a rotation of: JV, Greinke, LMJ, Urquidy, and Whitley, you have a rotation that could be very good if everything goes right, but a rotation with a lot of things that could go wrong: two aging aces, a potential ace who's always hurt, and two promising kids.  So you'd better have one of the best bullpens if you want the championship.  And that's the way baseball is trending anyway.

But cutting JV's innings from 223 to 180-190 is of paramount importance.  JV can still be great, as we saw most of the season, but by the time his IP is getting up in the 230-250 range in the playoffs, he'll just be pretty good. 

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19 minutes ago, LCHorn said:

Groom Verlander for a coaching position?  You guys are insane.  He’s making $30m a season and married to a supermodel.  He’s not going to be on the road for 200 days a year making $200k coaching a position group.  
 

Not sure what his future ex-wife has to do with anything. He is a baseball player and loves being around baseball. He'd last like 5 minutes carrying her purse around LA while she works. 

Damn near every coach in the league made more as a player than they do as a coach. They still coach.

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I would think that when you have 100s of millions in the bank, you do what makes you happy in retirement. If you still like being around baseball, you're involved in coaching or announcing. If you're sick of baseball, you don't do that.

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Houston should make a strong offer for Cole but put a deadline on it. Boras is going to play every bidder off each other and while you’re waiting for the Cole decision, you may miss out on other options. 

 

but to be honest given Coles weird comments last night, I don’t think he wants to stay with Houston.  Didn’t even want to acknowledge being an Astro 20 minutes after the game. 

There is a 10 day period for a free agent to accept or reject a qualifying offer. Once the offer is rejected, the player hits the open market.

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Toro replaces Diaz

Tucker replaces Reddick (if you can move him)

if not, tucker replaces Jake ?

lot of pitching slots open. Need a healthy LMJ  (with better mechanics), need Whitley to step up and be a mid June call up. Lot of other young arms that got looks this season and need to take the next step up 

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What kind of compensatory pick do they get if they give Cole a qualifying offer he’d never consider and signs elsewhere?

Under the new rules, If the team that loses the player does not receive revenue sharing and did not exceed the luxury-tax salary threshold the previous season, its compensatory pick will come after Competitive Balance Round B.

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find some guy from Cuba who doesn't button his top 2, multiple gold chains flying recklessly, throws 103mph with a wicked curve, wirey build, 1970s hair. 

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2 minutes ago, Mack Tripper said:

There is a 10 day period for a free agent to accept or reject a qualifying offer. Once the offer is rejected, the player hits the open market.

Does reject the qualifying offer prevent continuing negotiations? My point is that Houston shouldn't remain in the Cole/Boras negotiations long. Boras will want to stretch it out as long as possible and Houston shouldn't play that game. For good reason, team can't collude but they don't have to allow themselves to be held hostage by top free agents. Make an offer, put a deadline on it, and then move on when the player is still taking offers. It should actually lead to lower salaries for top players.

 

13 minutes ago, texashorne said:

 We have a great hitting team.. bats just went cold at the wrong time. 

Yep. Ran some quick analysis. Houston averaged 1.6 runs less per game in the postseason vs regular season. Washington was only .8 less. You have to expect fewer runs given facing better pitching but you still have to produce.

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I'm not worried about this team finding a few under the radar SP's to bolster the rotation. Verlander-Greinke is nothing to shake a stick at, a healthy McCullers, Urquidy in the back end, and Sanchez back midseason to give some depth. Whitley has been damn good in the Fall League, and somehow everyone is forgetting about Cristian Javier destroying motherfuckers in Corpus. 

I love Josh Reddick, but maybe it's time for him to go. His postseason hitting was atrocious (which is saying a lot with all of Houston's LOB), but maybe it's time to give Kyle Tucker the everyday spot. A Brantley/Springer/ Tucker outfield, supplemented by Jake and Yordan is a fast, power hitting outfield. 

Last night sucked hard, but it's not like because we lost 1/2 WS in three years somehow this organization doesn't know what it's doing anymore. Moves in the off season are going to be painful, but that's what this team does. They're going to keep winning for a long time. We're just going to have to get used to that. 

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Sanchez isn't pitching next season.  His injury is so serious that it's not for certain if he will be able to pitch again.

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33 minutes ago, tx 3 putt said:

Toro replaces Diaz

Tucker replaces Reddick (if you can move him)

if not, tucker replaces Jake ?

lot of pitching slots open. Need a healthy LMJ  (with better mechanics), need Whitley to step up and be a mid June call up. Lot of other young arms that got looks this season and need to take the next step up 

Diaz is under team control for another 3 years, and put up a great offensive year.

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1 hour ago, FondrenRoad said:

I think JV is good for the clubhouse.  Right behind Altuve in that regard.  He has been willing to help new arms that join the pitching staff too.  Strom isn't getting any younger either.  Ride JV's contract out.  Limit his appearances.  Maybe even test him in relief if he is willing.  Then groom him for the coaching staff to assist Strom and take over after Strom is done.

Yes, he has sucked in the World Series, but we don't get to either of these World Series without him.

I don’t see a guy with a couple hundred million in career earnings with a rich model wife wanting to work every day for 9 months out of the year.  

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15 minutes ago, Johnny Sack said:

I don’t see a guy with a couple hundred million in career earnings with a rich model wife wanting to work every day for 9 months out of the year.  

Tulo managed $149mm in career earnings, is married with a kid, and decided to go coach at a college program he had no ties to. 

People love the game.  They want to stay around it. 

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JV has stated he wants to pitch well into his 40s like Nolan. Can he? Doubtful, there's only one Nolan, but some of you guys are putting him out to pasture too early.

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2 hours ago, Nice Guy Eddie said:

Houston should make a strong offer for Cole but put a deadline on it. Boras is going to play every bidder off each other and while you’re waiting for the Cole decision, you may miss out on other options. 
 

but to be honest given Coles weird comments last night, I don’t think he wants to stay with Houston.  Didn’t even want to acknowledge being an Astro 20 minutes after the game. 

Maybe Cole should just be available on a per game basis to any team.  He can rock his Boras hat and jersey every game.

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cole was pissed after the game, same as anyone else.  i'm not reading too much into this as far as outwardly malicious behavior goes.

maybe he's mad at hinch for not putting him in, who knows what was said.  but he loves the fans, and he's an emotional dude.  i wish him luck, hopefully with anaheim or sd.  i don't want anyone suiting up for us next year that isn't fucking pissed about what happened the last 9 days.

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Which one of you was the moron caller that MLBRadio just put on the radio, and then told them on air to please wait a minute while he placed his Whataburger order?

Couldn't find a username 'Esau'....

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2 minutes ago, clapclapclap said:

Which one of you was the moron caller that MLBRadio just put on the radio, and then told them on air to please wait a minute while he placed his Whataburger order?

Couldn't find a username 'Esau'....

Not all heroes wear capes.

Because sometimes they don't fit around our fat necks. 

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2 hours ago, Player said:

Has anyone seen scraps? 

When he dropped me off last night I reminded him we have the UT bowl game to look forward too !

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Just now, tx 3 putt said:

When he dropped me off last night I reminded him we have the UT bowl game to look forward too !

That could have been the final straw...

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2 hours ago, HtownHorn said:

Diaz is under team control for another 3 years, and put up a great offensive year.

His injuries concerned me and toro would be a minimum pay player. Not sure what Diaz will get in arbitration. 

Edited by tx 3 putt

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2 minutes ago, Hank Chinaski said:

That could have been the final straw...

Image result for drive off a cliff gif

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11 hours ago, WBT said:

Big offseason ahead.  We have a chance next year to be the first mlb team ever with four straight 100 win seasons. 

I'll check in next week when the band wagoners quit telling us how to fix the team and it's back to the normal discussions.

Make sure you clear your takes through Tony first. 

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8 hours ago, HtownHorn said:

That is the wrong way to manage his workload. If you pull him early then you are burning up the bullpen. The real reason the Astros lost to Washington was the bullpen was dreadful, Rondon was the only relievers that didn't give up a run. 

Starting pitching had a 3.51 ERA

Relievers had a 5.73

Back in 2017 it was a blessing in disguise that almost the entire starting rotation was on the DL for a lot of May and June. Come playoff time they were still relatively fresh. 

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Back in 2017 it was a blessing in disguise that almost the entire starting rotation was on the DL for a lot of May and June. Come playoff time they were still relatively fresh. 
Yep... Verlander needs to develop mysterious shoulder fatigue before the All Star Break next year and then go on the 60 Day IL.

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11 minutes ago, UTHornFan014 said:
1 hour ago, Fudge Nuggets said:
Back in 2017 it was a blessing in disguise that almost the entire starting rotation was on the DL for a lot of May and June. Come playoff time they were still relatively fresh. 

Yep... Verlander needs to develop mysterious shoulder fatigue before the All Star Break next year and then go on the 60 Day IL.

This only works if they lock up the division in late May like they did in ‘17.   

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Chronicle article re: Cole's comments:

 

After calling himself “unemployed” and saying he would speak with media as “an affiliate of myself” following Wednesday night’s loss in Game 7 of the World Series, Astros starter Gerrit Cole clarified his comments.

“I was upset, and my tone did not come off quite the way I wanted it to,” Cole said Thursday. “One win away. We had the lead with eight outs to go. It’s just a tough pill to swallow.”

In the short time since the game had ended, Cole was dwelling on the team’s extraordinary season that came up short. He did not want the focus to be on his role or lack thereof in the game. He did not want to be bombarded with inevitable questions about how manager A.J. Hinch did not use him out of the bullpen or about the expectations for his upcoming free agency.

When a member of the Astros' media relations staff asked Cole to step into a media scrum in the clubhouse, Cole pushed back and suggested that he did not have to do interviews because, with the season over, he no longer was employed by the Astros.

“The comments were intended to be lighthearted, but also truthful in the sense that I don’t want to be talking about free agency and I don’t want to be addressing those comments 20 minutes after such a team loss,” Cole said.

Cole also explained that the Boras Corp. hat, which had the insignia of his agent, Scott Boras, he wore after Game 7 did not have anything to do with his relationship with the Astros. Cole had been wearing the hat for three months, mostly on days that he started, as “a good luck charm.”

He said he did not intend to disappoint or offend fans.

“My wife and I just are so comfortable here,” Cole said. “It’s been such a great environment for the family. It’s been such a wonderful opportunity from a pitching standpoint, from making lifelong friends — anybody that gets to hang around the unique people on our team, like José Altuve, Alex Bregman, Justin Verlander, we have one of the best managers in the game, A.J.

“I’m really grateful for this experience. I’ve loved every minute of it. I'm not saying goodbye, by any means. I truthfully don’t have a crystal ball. I could speak to what I know. And I know that I've loved every second here and I loved competing with the guys.”

Cole declined to discuss his priorities in free agency and whether he expects to re-sign with Houston or move on.

“The rest isn’t up to me,” he said. “I don’t know what they're going to do. I don’t have control over the situation.”

Cole said that, as far as he knows, the Astros and his agent did not engage in contract discussions this season.

Cole also refuted the assumption that he would prefer to play for a West Coast team. Before the American League Championship Series against the Yankees, Astros outfielder Josh Reddick had mentioned that Cole, a Southern California native, “probably wants to be closer to home,” and “it’s definitely going to be west of Nevada.”

“No, that’s not a fair assumption,” Cole said Thursday. “I never said that.”

Reddick also addressed a tension felt among Astros fans that the organization would not be willing to match the $200 million-plus contract Cole likely will reap on the free-agent market.

“If they wanted to make that move and get over the fact of paying the luxury tax fee, then I think it’s no problem for them,” Reddick said. “You get paid on what you’ve done recently. (Cole has) been doing leaps and bounds above what anybody else has done.”

In the regular and postseason combined, Cole went 24-6 with a 2.39 ERA and 373 strikeouts in 249 innings.

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