As we painfully watch the 2012 Astros season and National League history come to an end, we start to think about what the future could hold. But then, a painful reality sits in. What makes us think we can compete in the AL West by 2015? Where is the bright spot for this team?
Looking at the future competition, you will see three very talented franchises excited to welcome the Astros into their group and one that now feels like they may no longer be the worst team in the division. The Rangers are obviously the class with barely a deficiency, the Angels a close second as the spend freely and often and then the A's who are chocked full of great arms that it makes even the best offensive teams stomach acid bubble up just a bit. but what about the hometown 9? What do we have going in?
With a very few exceptions, all of the alleged talent that is being touted as the future is in AA right now. We have no pitchers with a lightening bolt attached to their bodies and we have no hitters who cause the fielders to do anything other than move in. There are no "can't miss" prospects on the horizon, only a lot of projection and conjecture. So what does the future truly look like??
Who will be the next Bagwell, Biggio or Caminiti? Is there truly hope in AA and in players like Singleton, Springer or Cosart? Is there a near term run for this team like we saw from 1997 - 2005 going to the playoffs 6 of 9 years? Is there a future Hall of Fame player who quite possibly isn't even on the radar yet? The answer is...we all hope so.
So, we who are not encouraged by the the players in uniform nor are we completely sold on the players in AA and AAA yet we try our best to support our team...our beloved team, stand on the proverbial ledge waiting to be rescued by the brilliant moves of Luhnow and Crane or to be pushed off by the frustration that could come from not having a competitive baseball team in the city of Houston for many, many years to come.
Please...give me something to talk me off the ledge.