How would you rate the Top 10 Astros?

Even with George Springer gone to the Blue Jays and Justin Verlander gone to Tommy John Rehab Land, the 2021 Astros have a lot of talent on that roster. Whether that talent shows itself like it did between 2017 and 2019 or struggles like in 2020 will be the key to how this team performs this season. But here is a shot at who the top 10 Astros are heading into 2021.

  1. Alex Bregman. Before the weirdness of 2020 occurred, Alex was the Astros MVP in 2018 and 2019 and almost the whole league’s MVP in that second season. He is about to turn 27, which is prime time for players, and he has a bit to prove after his 2020 struggles. Bregman should once again be their MVP. Unless…..
  2. Yordan Alvarez. It is weird to put someone in the second spot after only one half major league seasons and a second season killed by injury and wonder if you are underrating the young man. If he performs over the whole of 2021 like he did in half of 2019, he will elbow Bregman out of the way for the top spot. He could have quite a bit of regression and still be one of the team’s top four players.
  3. Jose Altuve. This is a critical season for Jose Altuve to prove two things. One, that he can earn the huge contract he was given now that he is on the other side of 30. Two – that he can get “IT” out of his head and perform up to his talent, not over-try in showing that he can perform without cheating.
  4. Michael Brantley. The biggest move of the off-season was bringing Brantley back for the next two seasons. This helps fill one of the gaping holes in the outfield, gives them a left-handed bat to help balance a right-centric lineup and gives them one of the most solid bats in the big leagues through 2022.
  5. Zack Greinke. Even though he had a bit of a down in 2020, he is overall the Astros top starting pitcher and the most likely to put in close to a full season as they play a season that is 2-1/2 times what they played in 2020. Greinke was one of the best starting pitchers in the majors for the decade leading into the 2019 season.
  6. Carlos Correa. No one on the team has as much on the line in the 2021 season as Carlos Correa. He was a tremendous defender last season, but his hitting was just so-so. He has been unable to pair top-notch hitting performance with a full season of play in his career. He can make or lose a lot of money on his free agency in 2021.
  7. Framber Valdez. Valdez vaulted himself towards the top of the Astros’ pitching list with a tremendous turnaround in 2021. He was arguably their best pitcher throughout the season and into the playoffs. This is his chance to prove the new Framber with control is the real Framber over a few seasons.
  8. Kyle Tucker. Tucker could easily end up in the top five of this list with normal progression. He, along with Valdez, was the biggest breakout stars of 2020. He was top or near the top in most offensive categories for the 2020 Astros. This season he should really benefit from having improved offensive production around him.
  9. Cristian Javier. It could be argued that this rookie was the best regular-season starter for the Astros in 2020 as he ended up third in the AL Rookie of the Year voting. Will he improve in his second season or will teams have a book on him in 2021? He sure looked like the real thing in his major league debut.
  10. Ryan Pressly. He was not a shut down closer. But he was a solid closer in his first career chance at the end game. It was even more impressive when you saw that he was about the only veteran choice down in the bullpen with Roberto Osuna, Brad Peacock, Joe Smith and Chris Devenski completing only 10.1 innings between them.

As usual, you dear readers get the last say.

 

41 comments on “How would you rate the Top 10 Astros?

  1. My top 10:
    Jose Altuve
    Alex Bregman
    Yordan Alvarez
    Carlos Correa
    Kyle Tucker
    Lance McCullers Jr.
    Framber Valdez
    Jose Urquidy
    Cristian Javier
    Zack Greinke

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  2. I think Pressly is more valuable than most people realize. Here is my top 10 with projected OPS+ or ERA+:

    Yordan / 165
    Pressly / 155
    Altuve / 140
    Urquidy 139
    Bregman / 138
    Correa / 131
    Framber / 129
    Tucker / 126
    Aledmys / 118
    Paredes / 117

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  3. What’s he got?
    MVP trophy? Yes
    Astros WS Ring? Yes
    Silver slugger? Five
    Gold Glove? Yes
    All-Star? Six time
    Career HOF numbers? Yes
    Career great postseason numbers? Yes
    Long Term? Yes, first to sign extension
    In his prime age? yes
    On the field? Always
    Attitude? The best
    Teammate? The best
    In your face? Never
    I go with Jose Altuve

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    • I would like to correct on item,1OP. That “in your face.” I remember the game when Bo Porter got on Carlos Corporan in the dugout and Jose did get in his face. He is the consummate teammate. He will even apologize for the scandal when apparently did not even participate. He is #1 for me, but in the 10 is all that matters to him.

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  4. Some stuff….
    – Astros pitchers/catchers report today!!
    – Went to our sister-in-laws after they got heat and water back and found out that a hot shower after a couple days is a religious experience. Things finally seem to be improving in the Houston area – especially if you are a plumber.
    – Fernando Tatis Jr. at 22 years old signs a 14 year / $340 MM extension with the Padres. Just wow. This could end up being a millstone or a steal. It is a no-trade agreement – I didn’t see where he has any opt outs
    – Tim Tebow retires from baseball….OK
    – Missed this when it was written back in January – but an Astro actually gets include in a positive list
    https://www.mlb.com/news/mlb-stars-who-should-bounce-back-in-2021

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Yordan Alvarez’s career OPS+ is 172 and he didn’t play last season.
    Jose Altuve’s career OPS+ is 124 and last season it was 71.
    Alex Bregman’s career OPS+ is 142 and last season it was 116
    Carlos Correa’s career OPS+ is 126 and last season it was 92
    Yuli Gurriel’s career OPS+ is 111 and last season it was 76
    Michael Brantley’s career OPS+ is 116 and last season it was 126.
    If the numbers revert to the mean, it is going to be a big year for the Astros.

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  6. Decided to check Astros twitter this morning:

    With different prospect rankings naming different Astros prospects near the top of their lists, maybe the Astros farm system is better than anyone suggests. I’m just sayin’!

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    • Been working by midnight oil, as Katy has been a 3rd world country the last week, and so today gives me 1st chance to see internet & how my Top 30 compares to other forecasters. I’ll go to publish after Spring concludes so here’s an idea beforehand the movers and shakers!

      1. Whitley is undisputed not even close imo. Peña replacing him is so Johnny Come lately but meh. For what it’s worth I was high on Jeremy Peña over Nova longer than it was ever in writing. That looks true today.
      2. Toss up here between Garcia, and Hunter Brown. Since Luis H did nothing to change that opine, sticking with him. It’s a compliment to them both.
      4. Peña
      5. I wanted to keep Leon toward lower half of top 10 but having a hard time separating him from Abreu, Lee, Ivey and Barber. Someone wrote that Baseball America ranked Leon 19 – wow what a discrepancy where some have him #2.
      9. Solis over Santos III for now.
      11. I’d like to be very aggressive on Pete Solomon but Daniels Nova Torres Dubin.
      16. I’d go with Dauri Lorenzo before Kessinger. A big fan of Grae but number 10, no way.
      18. Aggressive on McCormick, even over Brewer.
      20. Can’t believe Connine won’t fit in sooner, then there’s 18 yr old Richii Gonzales sight unseen supposed to be all that.
      22. Here I’d go Ty Brown, Jairo Lopez, Austin Hansen, Blair Henley
      26. Taylor Jones almost gets pushed out.
      27 through 40 where to slot these? Perry, Matijevic, Y Marinez, BDLC, Santana, Gusto, Bellozo, Macuare, McKenna Dawson Meyers, JP Lopez, J Sprinkle, Robaina, etc.

      This farm is quite deep.

      Astros top 10 WAR?
      Alvarez
      Bregman
      Tucker
      CC
      Uncle Mike
      Tuve
      Honestly, no idea here… seems like they’re ALL on bounce back yrs.

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  7. I’ve got to flip Bregman and Altuve. Alex will be 27 and ready to give us some really solid years. I can’t go too high with Yordan due to questionable wheels. McCullers is on my list. Contract year for Carlos. Anyway:

    Bregman
    Correa
    Altuve
    Tucker
    Alvarez
    McCullers
    Grienke
    Brantley
    Valdez
    Urquidy
    Pressly
    Javier

    Liked by 1 person

  8. OK, so someone fill me in on what is happening here.
    Every major league team on MLB.com has a list of top 30 prospects on this website.
    However, I can find no other list of prospects that have a prospect now listed as playing for their former college team.
    And, yet, there it is. The Astros #10 prospect, Jordan Brewer, has Michigan listed as his team.
    Has Jordan Brewer decided to go back to school?

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    • If I had to guess it’s because he last played at Tri-City…which is no longer an Astros affiliate…and had no other minor league experience for it to fall back on. When someone at mlb advanced media ran their scripts to clean things up following the shuffling of minor league teams and contraction there were likely mistakes made.

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  9. Paxton talking about signing with the Mariners after the Blue Jays had “interest” in him. ““They showed a lot of interest, and I had interest too, but they never came forward with an offer,”

    So I would like to announce that I am forming a limited partnership with members of Chipalatta to purchase the Astros. We have INTEREST but will not be making any formal offer. (The ladies will be in charge of budget and operations. They know how to stretch that dollar.)

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I can’t add the link here but nice article on mlb.com (Astros site) about Cishek and his decision to come here. He struggled last year but has identified a problem with his arm slot on how he fell off. He also has only heard great things about Dusty and Strom.
    There is also a good article talking with Baker.
    Makes me feel good to see these positive notes about some top notch people.

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  11. MLB released all the minor league schedules yesterday and there are some interesting aspects.
    All series in all leagues will be six-game series. You play six games against one team and then you have a day off and it is always the same day off. The Skeeters have every Wednesday off. The Hooks have every Monday off.
    What will teams do about pitching? Because you play every team six games in a row, will teams go to six man rotations? or will one of their starters pitch twice in a series?
    You can view the schedules at each of the team’s websites.
    I’m sure MLB did this type of schedule to cut down on travel during the pandemic

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    • By the way, the Skeeters start off the season with six games in Reno, then a day off, and six games in Sacramento, then a day off. They get 12 road games before they get to play at home.

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      • I am looking forward to their ticket sales. Mrs. and I will probably get season tickets… if they are allowing fans in.

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  12. It will be important for the Astros to get off to a great start. Their first 9 games include 7 games against the A’s and two games against the Angels.
    With three division winners and only two wild card teams making the AL playoffs, it is imperative for the Astros to win the division.
    The first nine games will go a long way in telling us how things might go.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I remember Baker not being happy with Abreu’s conditioning last summer.
    Hope this works:

    Liked by 2 people

    • I noticed Bryan Abreu lower body legwork recently. Strom says he wants him to remain a Starter, so his ranking would differ by perhaps 15 spots if he cannot command fastball or land the curve (volatile). If he is ALL Brent says, Abreu could be the #2 I had of him, before Garcia nabbed it.

      Framber stronger, already was in great shape … this is an awesome thing to read!

      On record: this will be his Ace in Waiting year finally, of McCullers. He always comes into camp in great shape, but now 2nd full season after TJ should be that guy. To think he pitched with no UCL for a whole season ‘17 is unreal.

      And lastly, if Urquidy makes the progress we all thought since before illness derailed him last May, he has about the highest upside of any starter simply by virtue of his elite control.

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  14. My son is trying to clear the driveway of 10 inches of snow and ice. It is about the length of two city blocks and has about a 20 foot rise in it. It’s not working very good. He’s using the bucket of the tractor. Snow on crushed rock just doesn’t do good together.
    Oh, the only farm animal who likes to give birth in zero degree temps was the Australian cow dog, who was mated to the Australian shepherd. Seven pups. They should be real good at herding sheep who moo.

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