2014 Astros

Hey guys. First of all, I just wanted to say that the Astros GM is getting back a lot of talent from all of the trades he has made this year. Then, after looking at their minor league depth and current roster, I realized that the astros could potentially compete as soon as 2014 if players progress as expected. I imagine the 2014 lineup looking something like this:
cf Robbie Grossman (some power, some speed, good on base skills, looks like a solid leadoff hitter to me)
2b Jose Altuve (all star, probably the best player currently on the roster)
rf J.D. Martinez (solid power, should improve as a hitter)
1b Jonathan Singleton (will pobably be ready by then, if so should be productive from hitting 4th)
ss Jed Lowrie (break out year in 2012, hopefully he can keep it up)
dh Mark Krauss (made improvements repeating double-A this year, he should be a solid contributor, some power)
lf Bobby Borchering (a switch hitter with 20 home run potential)
c Jason Castro (good catcher, should improve as a hitter, will hopefully develop more power, still solid hitting 8th)
3b Matt Dominguez (good defense at third with a little bit of power, not bad for a 9 hitter)

This is not a bad lineup in my opinion. I don't think it's unreasonable to believe that Singleton, Krauss, and Borchering will be solid contributors in 2 years. They are all currently in Double A, so if they keep up their current pace they'll be fine and if not Austin Wates or a free agent acq. isn't out of the question. That being said, you have 5 guys in the middle who are capable of hitting 20+ home runs, with two table setters at the top.

On the pitching side they have a bunch of mid rotation guys in my opinion. However, if Lyles progresses, he has the ceiling of a number 2 starter and Norris has the potential to be much better than he's been this year. As for an ace, I could see them trading for one. I could see David Price being available as by this time he may become to expensive for the Rays to keep (keep in mind that this is just speculation on my part) and the Astros have a lot of expendable talent in the minors. I could guess that they could put a package together of something like George Springer, Carlos Perez, Mike Foltynewicz, and Oberholtzer should Price be available. So here is my projected rotation:

S1 David Price
S2 Jordan Lyles
S3 Bud Norris
S4 Asher Wojcieowski
(has a good shot of being a solid mid rotation starter in my opinion)
S5 Rudy Owens/Robby Rasmussen (between these two lefites I figure one may turn out to be useful)

Their bullpen should look something like this:

cl Kevin Chapman (looks like a good future closing option to me)
su Jared Cosart (if he can't improve his command he should be able to be a good set up guy or closer)
su Paul Clemens (If he can't make it as a starter, hopefully he can contribute as a reliever)

So, there you have it. This roster should be good enough to compete in my opinion. However, everything has to go right and in baseball you can't necessarily count on that , but it's still nice to know that they have a pretty decent shot at competing in only 2 years, especially considering their current roster of players.

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