3 Astros who won’t survive an early playoff exit

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Justin Verlander, Tigers

Former Tigers and Astros pitcher Justin Verlander. (Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports)

The Astros are in prime position to win the AL West, but should they fail to make a legitimate postseason run, heads will roll.

Houston has several big names hitting the free agent market this offseason, and any team failure could lead to a complete upheaval.

Just a few years removed from the sign-stealing scandal, the Astros are trying to redeem themselves. In the COVID-19 shortened campaign, Houston was just one game away from winning the pennant. Oh what could have been.

Instead, the Rays spoiled what would’ve been a rematch with the Los Angeles Dodgers. As of this writing, the Astros hold a 2.5 game lead over the rival Athletics for the top spot out West. Is their current core enough to hold on? And should they fail to reach expectations, who will be shown the door?

The Houston Astros will part ways with Justin Verlander

Verlander is already rumored to be heading back to the team that drafted him in the Detroit Tigers. JV missed all of this season so far while recovering from Tommy John surgery, and he’s severely hurt his financial value as well.

Is there any team remaining which will pay him like an ace?

Detroit, for one, needs a veteran to help train their young cats. Verlander can serve as just that, and if he doesn’t go to MoTown, don’t expect the Astros to pay a premium for a pitcher who hasn’t thrown in a year.

Say what you want about Houston’s optics, they don’t waste money.

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