The Perpetual Post has an NL Central preview for us this morning, in the form of a roundtable with Howard Megdal, Jason Clinkscales, and Chris Pummer:
HOWARD MEGDAL: Ugh. I love Hunter Pence, and Michael Bourn sure is fast! Maybe Roy Oswalt isn’t as much in the decline phase as people think? Carlos Lee spends much of the time hitting, rather than fielding?
This looks like the worst team in baseball in 2010 to me.
JASON CLINKSCALES: Remember when the baseball world pointed and laughed at the New York Yankees for depleting their farm system to bring in aging veterans rendered ineffective in the insanity of The Boroughs? Yeah, I did that, too, but at least we knew that they had a core group of proven players to work with. The Astros thought they could replicate the model, but met drastic results.
A while back, Dan Szymborski, Chris Needham and Chris Pummer spoke on the effectiveness (or lack thereof) of Ed Wade’s tenure as general manager, but the decisions do come from the top. If owner Drayton McLane has learned the error of his ways in chasing the shiny new toy on the floor, the Astros can dig themselves out of their hole without too much impediments. Maybe this team will overachieve with the a refreshed air from new skipper Brad Mills over the canned Cecil Cooper, but not enough for those now-classic late season runs under former manager Phil Garner.
CHRIS PUMMER: I don’t know that there’s anything else to say. I hope they don’t rush Jason Castro and end up ruining the young catcher. Who is their shortstop?
There’s enough talent here to win more games than the Pirates, or maybe anyone else in the division who might have every possible thing go wrong for them. But the Astros will somehow find a way to be less interesting than any such team.
Not much to say after that.