With all the moves for the most part complete, the rotation still seems a bit foggy. It seems like the rotation will likely start with Harrell and Norris. Those two seem like a lock to start the season (barring a trade which I would be OK with). The last three can go to any one of a bunch of pitchers. It seems like Lyles, Humber, Ely, White, Kuechel, Cosart, or maybe Clemens can take the final three spots. If the season were to start today, i would bet on seeing this:
However, I'd like to propose something else. I am not a fan of either Humber and Kuechel, I don't think there is much to be excited about for either of them. I am proposing, looking into the FA market to find out final two starters. I really think the Astros should go and sign both Shaun Marcum and Jair Jurrjens.
Let's start with Marcum. Marcum will be 31 years old when the season starts. He has been in the NL Central the last two years where he had a 3.6 ERA and a 1.2 WHIP. In the AL over the course of five season he had a 3.85 ERA and a 1.24 WHIP. (http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/m/marcush01.shtml) Those numbers are very respectable for a pitcher like him. The guy had some elbow issues last season which led to a decrease in velocity, but I feel like he will be able to bounce back. If Luhnow can sign him to a reasonable 1 or 2 year deal (around 5-8 million a year), I think Marcum can be a huge steal for the Astros and barring trades of Norris or Harrell, he can be a #2 or #3 for the Stros. Of course if Marcum has a great first half of the season, the Stros can probably net a pretty decent haul for Marcum as well.
The other SP the Stros should chase after is Jair Jurrjens. Rarely in the MLB does a 26 year old (27 when the season starts) stick in Free Agency this long, especially with the track record he has had in his career. He has a career 3.62 ERA and had an All-Star season in 2011 (http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/j/jurrjja01.shtml). Last year he was plagued with a groin injury that never was 100% which led to his sub-par season. Jurrjens should be healthy this year, and is a prime candidate to bounce back to be the SP he was just two seasons ago. Luhnow should be willing to take him on for a one year deal, but I personally think he is worth a three year deal. It seems like Jurrjens should be willing to sign at around 4-5 million a year and a 3/12 or 3/15 deal seems reasonable enough for a team with such a low salary like the Astros.
With all that being said, I would love for the Stros rotation to look more like;
Of course, if the Stros do sign both those pitchers, I would assume Norris would likely be on the move pretty quickly. Anyway, I hope the Stros look at both Marcum and Jurrjens and see the potential value both can bring to the team.