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After steady rebuild, Astros on verge of taking a step back

Discussion in 'Houston Astros' started by xcrunner51, Aug 19, 2016.

  1. xcrunner51

    xcrunner51 Contributing Member

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    A USA today article on the state of the Astros: Link

    I found it after reading the TCB's Daily Crawfish Boil link to the Lone Star Ball (Rangers SB nation fansite) reaction post. It encapsulates a lot of what has been discussed in the last few days across multiple threads. The Rangers fans are just laughing at us.

    It paints Luhnow has whiny/petulant and the Astros veterans as frustrated.

     
    #1 xcrunner51, Aug 19, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2016
  2. kaleidosky

    kaleidosky Your Tweety Bird dance just cost us a run

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    reasonable article overall, thanks for posting. I don't see it painting Luhnow in the light you mentioned--I read his quotes very matter-of-factly. Yes, he has the one line about other GMs not giving out no-trade clauses...in my mind, that's in jest. He knows that's not going anywhere.

    And yeah Neshek sounds frustrated. I don't know about "the veterans" as a whole. But I bet he (along with the entire team) is frustrated by losing regardless, and they'll all probably come off that way in interviews right now.
     
  3. Nick

    Nick Contributing Member

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    Of course its a step back. They went from 2.5 games out from the division lead and well within the WC hunt to 10.5/6 games back in a matter of 2-3 weeks, all co-inciding around the trade deadline, the Valbuena injury, the LMJ injury, the Gomez DFA, and the Feldman trade.

    This is likely the toughest 3 week stretch in Luhnow's tenure, in terms of harshness of criticism and overall fan disappointment... slowly turning into apathy... as a season that looked squarely on the rise is now in free-fall.

    I'm sure the veterans aren't thrilled about the youth movement... and its not like all of these guys are coming up and excelling... so it makes it even more frustrating that on paper it seems like the front office hit abort (when in reality, they've called these guys up more out of necessity with all the injuries).

    This off-season, regardless of how the rest of the season goes, could easily be a make/break situation for the current regime.

    If they continue to take steps back while they have a prime Altuve, and talented Correa/Springer... then they're not as close as they thought they were, and while their farm is strong... if the players don't matriculate well AND they can't work trades for established players while prospect value is high... there could be enough question marks (without answers) to wonder how much longer to go forward with the SOP.
     
  4. vstexas09

    vstexas09 Contributing Member

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    **** the rangers and **** dallas
     
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  5. Buck Turgidson

    Buck Turgidson Mineshaft Enthusiast

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    Considering that Keuchel, McHugh, Rasmus, Gomez and DH Gattis have pretty much been the biggest problem with the team this year, I'm not sure "the veterans" have much room to b!tch.
     
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  6. Nick

    Nick Contributing Member

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    Add Castro. Fister, Gregerson also veterans. Neshek is the one quoted. At this point, I'd consider Altuve and Springer to no longer be kids either.
     
  7. sealclubber1016

    Supporting Member

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    I don't really buy into "cohesion" being the issue.

    The Astros haven't taken the step we wanted them to this year. A lot of things have gone wrong, terribly wrong is a few instances. Rasmus is having the worst year of his career, Carlos Gomez was a catastrophe, McHugh and Fiers have been far worse this year than their recent track record, and our Ace, and the the best pitcher in the AL last year, isn't even close to being league average this year, much less an Ace. All of these issues were prevalent before the deadline

    One top of that, 2 of our most valuable contributors have been shelved (Valbuena and McCullers)

    Given that, I think this team even being at .500 is a bit of a surprise. We could still very easily end up close to last years win total with all of these epic failures. I just don't see a huge red flag right now, 1 disappointing season doesn't even get me close.
     
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  8. cwebbster

    cwebbster Contributing Member

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    Unbelievable that people are wanting to hit the panic button. We have 10 rookies on the roster, plus one more coming up, all of which has the potential to be major contributors to All Stars. Houston fans are so goddamn fickle. We are probably in the best position long term this team has ever been in. The Rangers will be eating **** in the next two years.
     
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  9. Fyreball

    Fyreball Contributing Member

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    The only veteran on this team that has any room to bitch is Altuve, and you'll never hear a negative word out of him. The veterans have been one of the biggest issues on this team this season.....including Neshek, Gregerson, and Harris.
     
  10. Nick

    Nick Contributing Member

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    For me, the only red flag right now is pitching. Its the hardest aspect to acquire, there isn't an overwhelming prospect in the minors, and the guys at the MLB level have a lot of question marks.

    Keuchel is by far the biggest disappointment. Considering McHugh came out of nowhere initially... probably overachieved, and now is underachieving... he's just a guy at this point. Fiers is who he is....a 30+ year old pitcher who's peripherals are all trending the wrong direction.

    If Luhnow can't get front-line pitching... either via trade, free agency, or via matriculation of prospects... he won't have a likely short or long-term contender.

    Felix's starter potential, Musgrove, LMJ's health, and whatever is left within Keuchel are the biggest question marks to answer as this season winds down... and heading into next season.
     
  11. Nick

    Nick Contributing Member

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    Who's panicking?

    Regardless of the future... there still needs to be an overall upward trend. If this season plays out as is, its a step-back (but not a catastrophic one). If they continue to regress next year, that's more disappointment.

    Luhnow's regime didn't start last year. Its a cumulative trend from 2012 on. Other MLB teams have rebuilt and are primed to contend within that time-frame as well (so its not like they're that far ahead of the curve)... how much longer he gets to continue this plan rests squarely on the performance of the MLB team (and MLB team alone).
     
  12. dmoneybangbang

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    The Astros and Rangers are on two different two lines. Rangers can't afford to stay pat and the Astros can.

    With the signing of Gurriel, hopefully the Astros are going to start to add more vets around our core of young guys.
     
  13. crose

    crose Contributing Member

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    Hoping that next year will make us look back and laugh at this.

    Hopeful Lineup (and hopeful that the unknowns pan out):

    Springer
    Bregman
    Altuve
    Correa
    Reed
    Y Gurriel
    Gattis
    L Gurriel
    Teoscar/Kemp
     
  14. snowconeman22

    snowconeman22 Member

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    The quote from lunhow "blaming" the players for not coming here really irks me . He has to understand ( and if he doesn't then this is a huge issue) that the way we played , our record , and the perception of our team are all things under his control .

    Hamels wanted to come to a winning team . When you are the worst team in baseball for 3 years in a row ( ON PURPOSE) then one surging year doesn't erase that. Same thing with lucroy. Same thing with free agents .

    This issue applies not only to players but to fans . The idea that we should have unlimited patience and only use rationality when discussing the Astros is equally ludicrous.

    Regardless of what actually has happened behind closed doors in meetings with players and GM's ... A lot of media members and players and coworkers have spoken badly about lunhow and to a certain extent crane. I'm inclined to not make a decision without concrete proof , but sometimes where there is smoke there is fire .

    I disagree in general about is taking a step back , that depends where your expectations were . But certainly we are not a sure fire dynasty at this time either and given our draft position and trades we made over the past few years along with the success of certain your players ... It sure feels like we should be in a better position both this year and for the future.
     
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  15. Fyreball

    Fyreball Contributing Member

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    If Bregman, Reed, Musgrove, and Gurriel can take their lumps this season, and Keuchel can work out all the kinks in his throwing motion, then I won't necessarily consider this season a "step back." It's obviously not the way the team envisioned their progression, but we have a chance to be really ****ing great for the next 3-5 years if all those pieces fall into place. And to me, that's not even really asking too much. We're already seeing Bregman and Reed improving daily, and Musgrove has the right stuff to be a really solid rotation piece for years to come.
     
  16. ItsMyFault

    ItsMyFault Contributing Member

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    Everyone who watched the Astros last year knew they overachieved. A 'step back' was likely to happen. They still have a young core group and sometimes it takes a bit for it to all come together. Sometimes more moves need to be made. The rotation you guys have is pretty bad but that can be improved via trades, international prospects and the draft. It took Kansas City a while to really get their core group of young players playing well all together.

    I almost take it for granted sometimes how fast some of the young Cubs have come together. At the same time Theo has done a great job of surrounding some of the young guys with veterans.

    I think either way you go about doing it, you're going to need to surround young guys with more veterans to help them through their downs and maintain their ups.
     
  17. moonsh0t

    moonsh0t Member

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    It's been a tough few weeks but I think overall this year will be good for the team's future. This failure will fuel the high character guys the team has been built around. Bregman and Reed are showing why they were so highly touted and Paulino and Martes could both be top 50 prospects ready to contribute in in 2017. Plus they still have the financial flexibility to take on a few star veterans.

    The Astros had a season to remember last year.. which unfortunately had a collapse to remember as well. There will be many more winning seasons over the next decade and many more playoff appearances. The future is as bright as ever.
     
  18. Nick

    Nick Contributing Member

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    Compared to where they were, sure... but they still only finished 10 games above .500, thanks in large part to the Springer injury and a collapsing bullpen.

    Can't take anything for granted. Teams like the A's/Rays had much more young talent than the Astros have thus compiled... and they still both only got as far as one WS and two LCS combined.

    The Astros should be in a position to spend more relative money than the other two did... and they pretty much have to as they don't have the pitching prospects/talent those teams had in spades.
     
  19. Nook

    Nook Member

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    The Astros didn't "over achieve" last year at all.

    The Cubs have a payroll of $171,000,000 this season.

    The Astros have a payroll of $98,000,000 this season.

    The Astros struggles have nothing to do with having Kuechel and McHugh combining for an era of 4.7? Nothing to do with Gomez and Rasmus combining for an OPS of .600 and 20 homers? Nothing to do with Lance McCullers pitching less than 100 innings?

    The Astros ideally add another quality bat and a top line starter; but the issue hasn't really been the young players struggling and more to do with veteran players failing to play up to their career means.
     
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  20. ItsMyFault

    ItsMyFault Contributing Member

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    Yes they did. I think they did, a lot of other people think they did. There's nothing wrong with that either.

    The Cubs recently added to their payroll. The Astros and Cubs were pretty much on the same level in terms of getting young players up before 2015. I'm not sure why you're bringing up payroll anyway. That has nothing to do with what I was talking about.

    I didn't say pitching wasn't the reason, it's one of many I'm sure. The Astros probably don't have a legitimate #1 or #2 right now as far as legitimate world series contenders go. That's of course a big issue. That's not the only issue though.

    The young players struggling has been an issue among other things. It's been both things. Adding veteran players to surround your young players with is something that helps the young players grow.
     
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