The Houston Astros are in complete rebuilding mode, as they should be. Since July 2010, the Astros have traded Roy Oswalt, Lance Berkman, Matt Lindstrom, Jeff Keppinger, Hunter Pence, Michael Bourn, Mark Melancon, Carlos Lee, J.A. Happ, Brandon Lyon, Brett Myers, Wandy Rodriguez, Chris Johnson, and Wilton Lopez. The hope is obviously to build a stocked farm system, and compete in a few years–but only time will tell if their acquired/drafted talent is worth the wait. That’s just the risk of starting from the ground up.
However, with the dismantling of a team comes consequences. One of the most noticeable aspects of the players list above is that five of them have closed games for the Astros. To-date, the current Astros roster features no reliever with much closing experience. In fact, the top two candidates are tied for the most 2012 saves (just 1 a piece). Assuming the Astros are finished addressing their bullpen this off-season, there are just four inexperienced closing candidates going into 2013.…read the rest of this article at Baseball News Source.