3 players should already have the Houston in their sights

Chicago Cubs, Willson Contreras

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS – AUGUST 05: Willson Contreras #40 of the Chicago Cubs stands in the dugout after hitting a double home run against the Miami Marlins at Wrigley Field on August 05, 2022 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Nuccio DiNuzzo/Getty Images)

The Houston Astros are a good team, but they’re by no means a perfect team. You’ll need to address a few areas this off-season.

That Houston Astros are a very good team. In fact, they’re tied for the best record in the American League. However, they have a lot of upcoming free agents this offseason and some weaknesses in the team at the moment.

Some of their upcoming free agents include first baseman Yuli Gurriel, left fielder/DH Michael Brantley, catcher Christian Vazquez, catcher Jason Castro, reliever Rafael Montero, and utility man Aledmys Díaz. Additionally, their ace Justin Verlander and reliever Will Smith have player options, and first baseman/outfielder/DH Trey Mancini and catcher Martín Maldonado each have options on each other. So the Astros could have a lot of money off the books after this season.

Her 2022 payroll is around $188 million. according to Spotrac. They only have about $110 million on the books for 2023, so they have some room for some big signings.

Here’s who they should be signing already this offseason.

Astros: 3 Offseason Free Agent Targets

1. Catcher Willson Contreras

With all three of their main catchers potentially becoming free agents after this season, the Astros need to be in the catcher market. The best catcher in the free agent market will be Willson Contreras.

It was very surprising that the Cubs didn’t trade him at the trade deadline, but he could still leave them after this season, especially if he wants to compete in the near future.

Contreras was the National League starting catcher in the All-Star Game this year and he currently hits .253/.364/.463 with an OPS+ of 130. He also has 16 homers and 44 RBI in 94 games. He’s not great defensively, being either league average or below average in Defensive Runs Saved (DRS), Outs Above Average (OAA), and Pitch Framing Runs.

However, his racquet makes him one of the best catchers. Balance him with someone like Martín Maldonado, who the Astros turn to in the catching position almost exclusively for his defense, and they could make the position really strong.

https://fansided.com/2022/08/11/astros-offseason-predictions-3-players-target-aaron-judge/ 3 players should already have the Houston in their sights

John Verrall

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