Roster battles are few and far between for the defending champion Astros this spring, but manager Dusty Baker told reporters (including the Houston Chronicle’s Chandler Rome) that there’ll be a bit of competition in center field between Jake Meyers and Chas McCormick over the next six weeks.
“There’s competition … We hope [Jake] Meyers bounces back from the injury. We’ll see how Chas [McCormick] looks. There’s room for everybody to play. As you know, I’ll play everybody,” Baker said.
McCormick would surely have the inside running to get the bulk of the center field reps this year. The 27-year-old slashed .245/.332/.407 with 14 home runs in his second big league season, while putting up 5 Outs Above Average in about 450 center field innings.
Meyers, on the other hand, hit just .227/.269/.313 with a single home run over 160 plate appearances last season. To be fair to Meyers, he did only return from a torn labrum in June and hit a much better .260/.323/.438 during his rookie season in 2021. Like McCormick, Meyers has put up strong numbers in center field, earning 7 Outs Above Average in around 400 innings at the position last year.
With Kyle Tucker and Yordan Alvarez lined up to handle the work in the corner spots, center field is the only outfield spot with any sort of question mark around it. McCormick would have to be the favorite, but if a full, healthy off-season allows Meyers to regain some of his offensive numbers this spring it could give the Astros some positive selection headaches heading into the new season.
One other player that figures to feature in the outfield mix is veteran Michael Brantley. The Astros inked the 35-year-old to a one-year, $12MM deal this winter, bringing him back for his fifth season in Houston. Brantley’s always hit when he’s been on the field, as evidenced by his .306/.368/.464 line in four seasons with the Astros, but staying on the field has been a problem for the veteran. He went down in June and required season-ending shoulder surgery, limiting his contribution to just 64 games last year. Astros GM Dana Brown provided an update on Brantley’s recovery, and there seems no guarantee that he’s ready to go for opening day.
“It’s still day-to-day. He’s hitting, fielding ground balls, moving well, not feeling much pain. He’s on course. I think it’s going to go down to the wire, but I think it’s going to be close,” Brown said (Twitter).
While that doesn’t rule him out of being available for the Astros first series of the season, it is a slight step back from January when the expectation was Brantley would be ready for opening day. Brantley spent about half of his 64 games in the outfield last year, and when fit he figures to give Houston a left field/DH option in addition to Alvarez and Tucker.
Did the Astros release one of those videos that recaps their championship season as teams often do?
“The 2022 Houston Astros: We Didn’t Cheat This Time (as far as anyone knows).”
Yes, the video is out, and if you come on down to West Palm we will be more than happy to let you take pictures with the 2022 Championship Logo in the background.
Is that the title?
Or I could take some crayons and draw a “2017 Championship” logo on an old pizza box and it would be just as valid as theirs.
I rarely read comments on MLBtraderumors. But when I do, it’s to laugh at some idiotic troll’s comments. Some are funny and even original. This one is not. You tried though
Good thing I don’t care about your opinion then, I guess.
Funny is not the goal here, Champ. Run along.
What is the goal? Repeating the same thing everyone has heard the last five years?
You could say the say some pretty much for all 2017 playoff teams. Question – how often do you post digs about the 2018 WS Champs, Red Sox?
Yet you replied to it and clearly funny is not the goal. Stupidity and Condescension is and you’ve succeeded, Chump.
Yes sir right away running along as you wish all great and wise one
The Sox also cheated.
And if and when I hear their fan base defending it the way Astros fans do, I will comment.
But, for some reason (like all the other titles Boston has) they don’t.
It’s Astros fans who are desperate to warp reality to pretend they won something they actually stole.
Reminding cheaters they are cheaters and not winners was the goal, and it very clearly succeeded.
Never seen so many fans of any one team need this much Preparation H.
So, after a certain number of years, a thing you stole becomes a thing you own….?
Like a sports flag statute of limitations? Is that what you are arguing?
Not that they didn’t do it or that it wasn’t wrong….
This is what a lot of the ones who can’t bring themeselves to lie about actually winning like the others do do, cite a non-existent statute of limitations to imply that the stolen title, after waiting for a few years, should now be declared earned.
We simply don’t need your respect. We will just take it against your will. We are going back2back this year.
We understand that this fan base collectively has no shame or grasp on reality.
But, thanks for reiterating it.
Astros Hot Takes
The reality is that since opening day 2015 Astros have the best regular season record in the AL – only the Dodgers are better since then; and, post-season, nobody is better, since then.
Ain’t no shame in that.
I guess for some folks bitterness, resentment, hatred, and baby whining is the kink that adds spice to their otherwise dull baseball romance.
I guess you have no shame being a grown up still crying over something that happened years ago. And delusional enough to really believe it was only Houston. Pretty sad.
Grown ups know the difference between cheating and winning.
And they understand why it’s important to distinguish between the two in order to have a decent society that is not corrupt.
Desperate fan boys are unable to understand the difference.
An article 100% about the Astros you not only opened but read and commented on. Astros living rent free in this jack@$$’$ head
I think it’s important to pour yellow milk on stolen cornflakes.
Fan boys want sugar instead.
Not gonna happen.
For being a troll you’re not very entertaining. Go back to troll school and come back when you have some new material
Truth sounds like trolling when you don’t want to hear the truth.
The truth is the Astros won the World Series in 2017 and 2022 the truth is multiple MLB players have come out and said MANY mlb teams have cheated including but not limited to the dodgers brewers Yankees and Red Sox. Get off your high horse everyone cheats and the Astros won all 4 WS games in 2017 on the road where they couldn’t cheat. Now clean the basement like mom told you to
@ 66, dude it’s been 6 years now. Let it go…..
You are the fan of a loser who can’t get it out of your head that the Stros dominate baseball. My guess is you are a fan of the LA team with the fake Mickey Mouse 60 game “championship” or a fan of the NY team who is always chasing us. If not then you are probably the fan of a team that no one cares about.
Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers fans, the whiniest in baseball. Astros have owned the Yankees for a while, they feel entitled to a World Series every year. Red Sox fans don’t seem to make very many Alex Cora jokes. Dodgers fans beat people to death in the parking lot.
Astros fans know the difference between cheating and winning. The postseason was clean. The Astros beat the Red Sox, Yankees, and Dodgers fair and square.
Truth is there are two trophies in a case in Houston.
And, the playoff share checks cleared.
Folks like you can moan and complain till your little heart is content. Please do. Your allowed. Just know, fact is, Astros have two championships.
Have a great day!
Convince yourself that’s true some more…
Every time you say it gets more true, right?
No, if you believed it you’d skim right past these comments.
But you feel the guilt and shame and, thus, the need to defend yourself and their stolen title.
I’ve literally watched 2 innings of baseball total in the past 3 years.
If you want to convince yourself that jealousy is the motivation here, so be it.
After all, you convince yourself HOU won a title you very cleary know they stole and you pretend to believe that, so….go to town.
Wait so you’ve watched 2 innings of baseball in 3 years and you think you know what you’re talking about? Think you missed the sticky stuff episode and how about manfreds super balls. You sound like an old man who just likes to complain to hear his own voice. Haters gonna hate
“I shot the sheriff and this other guy shot the deputy, but since he killed someone, too, that means I’m not a murderer!!!”
So, you admit they cheated, then?
That they are cheaters?
And those cheaters won after cheating?
You admit all of that, as long as you can point to others who also cheated?
That’s what you are going with?
Do you just ramble for the sake of it? You just repeat the same stuff over and over. Maybe if you actually watched baseball you would have some idea what you’re talking about. Everyone let’s stop feeding this troll and he’ll go away
So, because I stopped watching baseball a few years ago because TTO made it boring AND because they kept crowning ILLEGITIMATE CHAMPIONS, I am not able to comment on something that occurred prior to that?
That’s especially weak.
You should go back to the “yes, they cheated, but so did others, which magically makes them not cheater somehow” BS you were pedaling earlier.
Either way, you’ve already admitted the truth and I thank you for that. Good job.
Are you still talking? My god just shut up you have said all you had to say multiple people put you in your place. Go back to hiding under your rock and go watch basketball and leave here since you don’t even watch baseball
“Never argue with an idiot. They will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.”
Yea you’re absolutely right. He’s just a Yankees fan tired of being the Astros red headed stepchild and wanted to whine about it
Very good advice!
Teams and players cheat all the tine. No tine in baseball history has cheating never occurred.
There hasn’t been a funny trash can jokes since 2020. I’m pretty sure they are all played out and have been heard before. (Unless one of you can prove me wrong with one. 🙂 )
So, is their bench currently projected to be: Korey Lee, Mauricio Dubon, Jake Meyers and David Hensley?
Yes, unless Diaz performs well enough in the spring to displace Lee.
Most likely that will happen. Yainer Diaz has a bright future
I am keeping an eye on Meyers for fantasy baseball. His minor league numbers are interesting; Nice contact rate and obp. A nice bundle of steals. And you’re putting him in that stacked lineup.
He looked good after his last call-up. Working back up to full strength hindered him last year.
Another guy of that ilk (not on the Astros) that I’d keep an eye on is Josh Rojas in AZ.
Should have more baserunners ahead of him, strong batting and swing decisions, bunts for base hits if need be, and hit better with runners on (and even better with RISP).
Funnily, he was an old Astros prospect.
Yeah man I have been on the Rojas breakout train for years now it seems like, haha. He is a nice player with all the peripheral skills, and should absolutely benefit from those kids they are bringing up around him.
The guy who I am making sure that I get, and he’s not a “breakout” or sleeper guy or anything…..but I am utterly convinced that Corey Seager is going to wreck that ballpark with no shift….
I don’t generally play fantasy in a league (I do daily lineups), but I keep tabs on MiLB sleepers so I can get budget buys. I mainly focus on the DBacks system.
That being said, I’d keep an eye out for Blaze Alexander later in the season; SS fit (80 grade arm), good batting eye, and aggressive swings on strikes (that looks like he’s trying to time FBs to Oppo with 55 raw power).
He won’t be Seager, but I’m convinced he’ll be a stud when he settles in.
If you enjoy analysis articles, I actually wrote an analysis of Rojas’s batting approach (primarily focused on peripheral stats) titled “Is Josh Rojas A Good Hitter?” for a AZSnakePit.
I tried to explain everything as in depth as possible (it is kind of long) so the analysis can be replicated for other players by other people; you might enjoy it 🙂
Good stuff man! Nice bantering with ya. I’m checking out your article right now. Keep writing
-a former journalism student/sports editor at my community college paper!
Appreciate it, man! Nice bantering with you too. I never see the harm in sharing guys I’m looking out for, since I’m not playing against anyone here and there’s more than enough betting success to go around.
If you enjoy that one, I have another HEAVILY conceptual (and thus subjective) piece about talent evaluation titled “Philosophy of the Philosophy” among the FanPosts on that same site published within the last couple weeks.
Kind of out there, but I found it thought provoking; then again, I wrote it lol
Chas stated in another offseason interview that he was told starting CF was his job to lose based on his perfomance with the starting job in ’22 late & postseason. Don’t really love this line from Baker. I guess he was just trying to give the media something/anything.
Chas is the better option. Meyers can’t stay healthy and seems Myles Straw without the speed
I think both things are true. McCormick is the starter, but there’s room for Meyers to win playing time.
shocked they signed Brantley to a guaranteed 12 million… who were they bidding against…
“66TheNumberOfTheBest” Must be another disgruntled Yankees fan. Still upset that the Astros have OWNED the Yankees for several years. My advice is to accept the karma, feel the Astros warm glow and know that the Yankees can always get to the World Series, they just have to buy tickets like the Dodgers. #WhoseYerDaddy #AstrosNationGoingForTwo