There are so many good points being tossed randomly around about the 2017 Astros vs. the recent versions of the Astros, that it feels like a dart tournament for the blind.
The Astros aren’t as good as the Cubs.
The Astros are not the dog they were a few scant years ago.
The Astros never seem to make the big move that will put them over the top.
The Astros have made some solid moves that got them into the playoffs in 2015 and into contention in 2016.
The Astros have traded away a lot of prospects and have little or nothing to show for it.
The prospects traded away have mostly done little to this point.
And on and on….
There are two facts that need to be remembered by proponents of both sides of these arguments:
- No previous version of the Astros under this or any other front office has ever won the big one and there are a lot of folks that are sick of going to the doctor hoping to squeeze enough years out of their lives to see it happen.
- No matter how the off-season has started and no matter who the Astros have signed so far, there is a lot of time and a heck of a lot of budget to be covered before anyone knows what this team will look like.
The fans need to be patient with each other more than with the team. The ones (and you know who you are) who are being impatient and judging this team before Thanksgiving, need to stop assuming what the team won’t do in the next couple months based on what it did not do previously. The ones (and you know who you are) who are being impatient with the cynicism and negativism of the other fans need to have some empathy for folks who have been through the ringer and disappointed for so much of their too fast dwindling lives.
The half full view of this team is as follows:
- It was pretty miraculous that they were anywhere close to contending last season considering how little they got out of Lance McCullers and how much bad they got out of Dallas Keuchel. The team had some toughness and spunk (when not playing the Rangers).
- If they made no more moves from this day forward, a lineup that can boast Jose Altuve, Nori Aoki, Alex Bregman, Carlos Correa, George Springer, Yulieski Gurriel, and Evan Gattis is a heck of a lot deeper than the lineup that started the 2016 season. Adding Luis Valbuena or some DH/1B help can only make this lineup more solid and more potent.
- The bullpen, was solid after the failures of the early season and could be a top 5 ‘pen in 2017.
- The rotation is the biggest question, but a number of these guys were very good just one year removed back to 2015.
Yes, it would be nice to think that the team will outbid other teams for someone other than an iffy, injured starter. And they could still do that. It would be even nicer to know what the team will look like come February by looking in our crystal balls. That will only happen with time, not magic.
The bottom line is there is no reason to doubt this front office for what has not happened yet. There is no reason to have unreasonable expectations and praise for this front office for what has happened before.
It is going to be an interesting off-season, if we all survive.