Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2015 Draft Prep Guide
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Playoff Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
2015 Draft Prep Guide
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Daily Fantasy
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2014 Fantasy Outlooks: Houston Astros

  •  

The Astros have set franchise records for most losses in a season three years in a row, and last season's dive resulted in a 51-111 record. The rebuilding is likely to continue, but 2014 will probably be the year Astros fans will begin to see the fruits of a revamped farm system in earnest.

The youth movement started to get underway last season, as Bud Norris was dealt to the Orioles and Erik Bedard and Lucas Harrell moved into swingman roles, making way for Jarred Cosart, Brett Oberholtzer, Brad Peacock and Paul Clemens to enter the rotation as the season wore on. All four are expected to return in starting roles this year, filling out the rotation behind free agent signee Scott Feldman.

2014 Fantasy Outlooks
A.L. East N.L. East
Orioles Braves
Red Sox Marlins
Yankees Mets
Rays Phillies
Blue Jays Nationals
A.L. Central N.L. Central
White Sox Cubs
Indians Reds
Tigers Brewers
Royals Pirates
Twins Cardinals
A.L. West N.L. West
Astros Diamondbacks
Angels Rockies
Athletics Dodgers
Mariners Padres
Rangers Giants

Once again, Jason Castro, Jose Altuve and Chris Carter will anchor the lineup, but offseason acquisition Dexter Fowler will be a new presence at the top of the order. Further down, Matt Dominguez, Jonathan Villar, Robbie Grossman and L.J. Hoes will likely reprise the roles they took on for all or part of last season. Expect the Astros' roster to be fluid throughout the year, though, as they will likely need to make room for prospects like outfielder George Springer, first baseman Jon Singleton and starting pitcher Mark Appel.

Some positions could be in flux from spring training on forward. Marc Krauss, Jesus Guzman, Brett Wallace and Japhet Amador are among those who will vie to win the job at first base, though whoever emerges out of camp could just keep the seat warm for Singleton. Bullpen roles are also unclear as the Astros head into Grapefruit League play. Josh Fields and Chia-Jen Lo, who each got save opportunities last year, will be back in the mix to close, but so will newcomers Jesse Crain and Chad Qualls.

The Astros have probably hit rock bottom, but they're unlikely to be good enough to produce many Fantasy-relevant options. Even if they find a closer to keep the job all season, there may still be a dearth of save opportunities. Should Springer and Singleton spend a large chunk of 2014 in the majors, they still might lack the lineup protection and run-producing opportunities to launch them into Fantasy superstardom. With the emergence of some top-notch prospects along with the return of a few solid Fantasy contributors, such as Altuve, Castro and Villar, there is at least something for owners to pay attention to when they happen upon an Astros game while channel surfing this year.

Rotisserie gem ... Jose Altuve, second base

2013 projected lineup
Player Name Position
1. Dexter Fowler CF
2. Jose Altuve 2B
3. Jason Castro C
4. Chris Carter DH
5. Matt Dominguez 3B
6. Marc Krauss 1B
7. Robbie Grossman LF
8. L.J. Hoes RF
9. Jonathan Villar SS
Bench Jesus Guzman 1B
Bench Cesar Izturis 2B/SS
A year ago, Altuve finished as the eighth-ranking second baseman in Rotisserie value, but it would be a mistake to think that he doesn't belong in the top five this year. What Altuve produced in 2013 represents his floor. We already knew he was capable of 35 steals in 152 games, and from his first full season in 2012, we know that Altuve is able to hit for a little more power and score 80 runs, even while hitting in an anemic lineup. He could easily leapfrog Matt Carpenter, Daniel Murphy, Brandon Phillips and Ian Kinsler just by getting back to the level of his '12 performance. Turning just 24 in May, Altuve could still enjoy a breakout and vault even higher in the rankings.

Late-round flier ... Matt Dominguez, third base

Altuve and Castro are clearly draftable in all standard mixed league formats, but it's time to add Dominguez's name to this brief list. Last year, his 21 home runs tied him for eighth-most among third baseman, as he experienced a breakout that was presaged by a homer spike that occurred when the Marlins promoted him from Double-A to Triple-A in 2011. As he's not much of a line drive hitter, Dominguez will disappoint those looking for a high batting average, but he should improve from last season's .241. A 20-plus home run season with a .260ish average will put Dominguez on a par with Brett Lawrie and Aramis Ramirez in terms of overall value, and that makes him worthy of a late-round pick.

Impact prospect ... George Springer, outfield

2013 rotation/bullpen
Player Name Throws
1. Scott Feldman RHP
2. Jarred Cosart RHP
3. Brett Oberholtzer LHP
4. Brad Peacock RHP
5. Paul Clemens RHP
ALT Dallas Keuchel LHP
Bullpen Breakdown
1. Josh Fields RHP
2. Jesse Crain RHP
3. Chad Qualls RHP
4. Matt Albers RHP
5. Kevin Chapman LHP
The Astros may want to send Springer to Triple-A to start the year in order to delay his arbitration clock, but it's just a matter of time before we see him in H-Town. Springer strikes out far too often -- he recorded a K in nearly one out of every three at-bats last year -- but that's end of his list of negatives. He hits for tremendous power, has posted high walk rates and is a stolen base threat. Between Double-A and Triple-A, Springer was three home runs short of a 40-40 season. Unless he is called up in June or later, he's a good bet to finish as a top 50 outfielder in 2014.

Prospects Report

Springer could be the first of the Astros' major prospects to graduate to the big leagues, but several others could follow in short order. As mentioned above, Singleton could earn a callup as long as he rebounds from a disappointing, suspension-shortened 2013 season, and he even has a slight chance to break camp with the team. ... Outfielder Domingo Santana has a lesser chance to show up in the majors this year, but if his power hitting continues to improve like it did the last two seasons, he could force his way onto the big league roster. ... Shortstop Carlos Correa is one of the top prospects in all of baseball, but he is still probably at least a year and a half away. ... Mike Foltynewicz and Asher Wojciechowski have long surnames, but neither may have a long wait to make their debuts in the Astros' rotation. Both are legitimate targets in dynasty leagues and deep single-season AL-only leagues. The same is also true for Appel, the first overall pick in the 2013 amateur draft, even though he has yet to pitch above Class A. ... Starting pitchers Vince Velasquez and Lance McCullers won't likely be relevant to single-season league owners until 2015 at the earliest, but both need to be owned in dynasty formats.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us on Twitter @CBSFantasyBB or Al Melchior at @almelccbs . You can also e-mail us at fantasybaseball@cbsinteractive.com .

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Astros recall OF Preston Tucker from Triple-A on Wednesday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(3:19 pm ET) The Astros have recalled outfielder Preston Tucker from Triple-A Fresno. Tucker was sent down back on Aug. 22 after struggling at the plate for much of August. 

But he went 4 for 4 with a home run and two RBI on Sunday for Fresno, and hit .303 in the eight games since his demotion.


Mariners demote Jesus Montero to Triple-A
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(2:58 pm ET) The Mariners sent first baseman Jesus Montero down to Triple-A on Wednesday, reports The News Tribune. Montero is hitting .200 with two home runs and nine RBI in 75 at-bats.

Diamondbacks recall RP Keith Hessler from Triple-A
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(2:54 pm ET) The Diamondbacks have recalled left-hander Keith Hessler from Triple-A Reno. Hessler has appeared in eight games in relief for the D-Backs in 2015, and he carries a hefty 15.19 ERA in 5 1/3 innings.


A's RP Evan Scribner has torn lat muscle, will miss rest of season
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(2:13 pm ET) Athletics reliever Evan Scribner will miss more than a few games. The right-hander has been diagnosed with a torn lat muscle and will be out for the rest of the 2015 season.

Scribner left the game Monday with what was described as shoulder soreness. It is unclear whether the two injuries are related.

In his fourth season with the A's, Scribner went 2-2 with a 4.35 ERA in 54 relief appearances. 


Cubs' Kyle Schwarber scratched Wednesday with rib soreness
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(1:48 pm ET) Cubs rookie Kyle Schwarber was scratched from Wednesday's lineup against the Reds due to right rib soreness. Schwarber had been slated to start in left field and bat second, but he'll sit this one out, with Chris Coghlan taking over in left.

Schwarber said he experienced pain while taking swings in the batting cage. He will he a precautionary MRI.

Schwarber homered in Tuesday's ballgame, but he's hitting just .189 with 14 strikeouts and four walks over his last 10 games.


Angels recall 1B/OF Efren Navarro from Triple-A
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(1:42 pm ET) The Angels have recalled outfielder/first baseman Efren Navarro prior to Wednesday's game against the A's. Navarro will be with the Angels for the fifth time this season, as he has been going back-and-forth to Triple-A Salt Lake.

Overall, Navarro has played 37 games for the Angels in 2015. He has hit .260 with four doubles and five RBI.


A's option pitcher Cody Martin to Triple-A
by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(1:19 pm ET) The Athletics sent pitcher Cody Martin down to Triple-A on Wednesday, the team announced.

Martin only lasted three innings after surrendering five runs on six hits in Tuesday's start. He is 2-4 with a 6.57 ERA over 24 2/3 innings.


Marlins SS Adeiny Hechavarria leaves game with hamstring injury
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(12:35 pm ET) Marlins shortstop Adeiny Hechavarria left Wednesday's game against the Braves in the second inning with left hamstring tightness.

Hechavarria reached on a bunt single with one out in the second, and was seen stretching out his hamstring. He was immediately lifted for a pinch runner.

Hechavarria is being considered day-to-day at this point.


Marlins promote RP Raudel Lazo from Double-A on Wednesday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(11:21 am ET) The Marlins announced that they have recalled pitcher Raudel Lazo from Double-A Jacksonville on Wednesday.

The 26-year-old left-hander was 4-3 with a 2.23 ERA in 26 relief appearances between Class-A Jupiter and Jacksonville in 2015. He also posted a 44:9 K:BB ratio in his 34 1/3 innings of work. He has never pitched in the big leagues after being signed by the Marlins back in 2012.


Dodgers bring RP Joel Peralta off 15-day DL on Tuesday
by Jason Lempert | Staff Writer
(10:57 am ET) The Dodgers activated reliever Joel Peralta from the 15-day disabled list, according to the team's transactions page. Peralta had been out since Aug. 11 with a neck injury.

Peralta has made just 25 appearances in 2015, his first season with the Dodgers. He missed time earlier this season with a pinched nerve in his neck.


 
 
 
Rankings