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10 Things to Watch for This Spring Training (Astros Spring Training Game One Thread)

Spring Training Game One Thread. Baseball’s BAAAACK!!!

MLB: Spring Training-Houston Astros Workouts Rhona Wise-USA TODAY Sports

Baseball’s baaaack.

Sure, the games don’t count. But it’s been almost four long months since Yordan launched the nail in the Phillie's coffin last November with his moonshot to CF and brought another championship trophy home to Houston.

And now we’re ready for another great season and championship run.

The Astros play the Mets at 12:05 today. And it’s on TV! Brandon Bielak, who could make the Opening Day roster with the injury to Lance McCullers, will start for the Stros against Denyi Reyes.

What to watch for this spring.

  1. The battle for backup catcher. Will it be Yainer Diaz or Korey Lee?
  2. The battle for starting CF. Does Jake Meyers prove that 2021 was no fluke and that he can return from injury, or do we keep doing the Chas chomp this year?
  3. Free agents. The Astros added Jose Abreu and re-signed Michael Brantley. Both have had illustrious careers but are also in their mid-thirties. Do they still have enough left in the tank?
  4. Rules changes: Will the time clock, no-shift rule, 2-pickoff limit, and larger bases help or hurt the Astros?
  5. Will World Series MVP Jeremy Peña continue to make us say, “Carlos who?” or will he suffer the customary sophomore slump?
  6. Will Forest Whitley, former first-round draft pick, finally make a run at the big league roster, or is this the year we finally decide he is a bust?
  7. Can the pitching staff repeat their amazing success from 2022?
  8. Mauricio Dubon and David Hensley look like the likely utility replacements for departed Aledmys Diaz. Is there a dark horse in the race for the 26th roster slot?
  9. Will Hunter Brown prove he belongs in the starting rotation for good?
  10. Does baseball’s top 2 slugger, Yordan Alvarez, continue to make progress defensively as a left fielder?

Follow the Game

Watch: Astros - ATT SportsNet-SW

Listen: Astros - KBME 790 AM/94.5 FM HD-2, Mets - WCBS 880