Astros Sign Carlos Beltran, Out on Encarnacion?

The hits just keep coming for the Astros as they sign Carlos Beltran. As the team’s likely designated hitter, what is his fantasy value for 2017?

Yes, this one is real.

The Houston Astros continue to make a big splash this offseason by adding another offensive player. After trading for Brian McCann and signing Josh Reddick, the team signed yet another bat for the lineup. It was announced Saturday afternoon that the Astros signed outfielder/designated hitter Carlos Beltran to a one-year deal. What can we expect from him next season?

A false report came out that the Astros signed Edwin Encarnacion. Just days later, Houston signed the hitter they wanted in Beltran. But is it the one they need?

I think it is. Beltran played as either DH or outfield in 2016. The Astros, with their current team, already have most of those spots filled. McCann fills catcher, making Evan Gattis the full-time right fielder. George Springer and Reddick are the other outfielders with Nori Aoki as a bench option.

Roster Resources lists Gattis as a bench player and Beltran as the DH. I don’t that will be the case. Aoki put up decent numbers, but not what the team is looking for.

He hit .283/.349 with four home runs, four triples and 24 doubles. He drove in 28 RBI and scored 63 runs in 118 games with the Seattle Mariners.

Gattis hit .251 with 32 home runs, which makes it difficult to take him out of the lineup. The Astros have enough hitters to get on base for the others to drive them home. This makes them one of the best lineups in all of baseball.

Beltran split time with the New York Yankees and Texas Rangers last season. He played 151 combined games and hit 29 home runs, 93 RBI and .295/.337/.513.

Despite leaving the team in July, Beltran still led all Yankees hitters with 22 home runs and second in RBI with 64. He left with a .304 average and .344 on-base percentage.

The benefit of having the soon-to-be 40-year-old hitter in the lineup is his switch hitting abilities. Beltran hit .338/.380/.589 with nine homers in 163 plate appearances against left-handed pitchers.

I think Encarnacion would have been a better fit in Houston. The team has a need at first base. Beltran overlaps Gattis’ (and others’) role on both sides of the ball.

Regardless, Beltran will have another year to post great numbers.

You’re move, Texas.