The Astros cut 10 from the major league spring camp, sending the players to the minor league camp. Through a combination of minor league assignments and use of options, the Astros cut the following players: (reassigned) Che-Hsuan Lin, Carlos Perez, C.J. Fick, Josh Zeid, Sergio Escalona; (optioned) Robbie Grossman, Jimmy Paredes, Jonathan Villar, Paul Clemens, and Dallas Keuchel.
I don't think any of these cuts qualify as significant surprises. Fick, Escalona, and Keuchel seemed to have an outside chance at making the ML pitching staff, but it appears that both will be OKC bound, where they will be a phone call away from Houston. Grossman, Paredes, and Villar got in some good playing time with the major leaguers, but they have always been expected to start the season in Oklahoma. Lin had only a little time in camp, because he played on the Taiwan WBC team, but he generally has been viewed as AAA depth for the outfield.
This round of cuts seems like a good sign for Chia Jen Lo, who was a long shot to make the team going into to spring training, but has pitched very well. Given that some other viable relievers were cut in this round, Lo obviously is getting a good look.
Noting that the end of spring camp is only a couple of weeks away, GM Jeff Luhnow said:
"We got to get down to 25. Pitchers are going longer in games. We’ve got less innings to dole out. We want to see our position go a little deeper and have a few more at-bats as well. At lot of these guys we’re sending down today have a bright future in our organization. They know they’ll be back.”