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Royals 5, Astros 1: Astros missing pieces, get swept by Royals

The Astros are a puzzle missing a few key pieces.

Scott Halleran

Houston is like a jigsaw puzzle. Instead of being a finished product, though, the Astros are missing the box lid and 200 of the 250 pieces.

Problems with the offense? James Shields will strike out 12, including six straight.

Problems with the pitching? Scott Feldman's gonna give up five runs and have his first bad start of the season.

Since last season, we've talked about how Houston just lacks actual major leaguers. There are not enough guys who have proven they can hit major league pitching, so there are too many black holes in the lineup at any given time.

Except things are getting slightly better. Houston added a few honest-to-god big leaguers in the offseason. They traded for one in Dexter Fowler. They promoted another in George Springer. They bolstered the bullpen with plenty of them.

They just don't have enough.

Runs are still hard to come by. There are still spots in the roster which are hurting the team night after night. No one prospect will fix any of that. No two prospects either.

Eventually, though, games like this 5-1 loss to the Royals might reverse. Graduate enough major leaguers from the minors and Houston might get back to winning games again.