You might call it a short-lived dynasty, but all empires are built to eventually be toppled, as the saying goes. The Houston Astros have toppled themselves with their sign-stealing scandal. So where does the franchise go from here?
I would imagine there will be many changes upcoming for the Astros. The best way to make people forget is to bring in fresh faces, innocent faces, and have the older memories drift away like a bad dream. This idea of a clean break could not align more with where the Astros are in their post-championship process.
Much of their original core will be free agents in upcoming seasons, so many in fact that some won't make this list. Less crucial stars like outfielders Josh Reddick and Michael Brantley could return for different reasons. Brantley was not a part of the team in 2017, and Reddick has been outspoken with team pride after the scandal, so not many others might want him. Brad Peacock (SP/RP) is also a free agent in 2021, and big names like Zack Greinke, Roberto Osuna and Justin Verlander are among others in 2022. There will be a lot of decisions upcoming that determine the future of this franchise, here are the three players least likely to be a part of it.
3. Yuli Gurriel
Turning 36 in June, Yuli Gurriel is also an impending free agent. The Cuban star joined the MLB late in his career, and never quite lived up to the hype until 2019, where his home run numbers jumped from 13 to 31. Whether you want to say the juiced baseball or the sign stealing had something to do with this, red flags immediately fly here for anyone who knows the game. Gurriel's numbers could have a harsh return to reality in 2020, which might spell the end of his days with the Houston Astros.
2. George Springer
George Springer has the raw ability to overcome and rejuvenate his career. There is little doubt that the Astros would want Springer back, he was a homegrown talent who developed into a star and one of the faces of their franchise. The larger question is whether or not Springer would prefer a fresh start somewhere else. If he truly wants to get away from everything that has happened, the slugger might decide to test the market in 2021.
1. Carlos Correa
The once highly-touted shortstop is not a free agent till 2022, so this would have to be by trade in the short-term, which rumors of were circulating earlier in the offseason. Carlos Correa's best year was in 2017, the main season that has been called into question. I give Correa some credit, he was one of the first Astros to admit to wrongdoing, and backed up scapegoats like Carlos Beltran, saying everything he did he did by his own volition. Even so, his numbers are startling because of this. Partly due to injury and partly due to major league struggles, Correa has not become the player he was expected to be, yet. If the Astros can get good value in return, we might see him traded before his free agency arrives.
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Michael Obermuller is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Michael also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username king_mizzard. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.