2. Andrew Chafin
The Astros continue to have a formidable starting lineup. Add Story into the mix, they should remain contenders. Their starting rotation is youthful and talented outside of Justin Verlander who only has one of those qualities as he approaches 40.
The bench and the bullpen are another story. Both can be hit and miss with free agency. In regards to the latter, Andrew Chafin is someone the team should get on the phone with and discuss what it will take to get him to Houston.
Chafin is one of baseball’s best free agent relievers. He is coming off of a 1.83 ERA campaign in 68.2 innings of work. His overlooked success dates back to his Arizona Diamondbacks days where he logged 271.2 innings and had a respectable 3.68 ERA over the course of several years.
What makes Chafin a nice addition for the Astros is his left arm. Blake Taylor is the lone lefty in the bullpen. Even if the three-batter-minimum rule has essentially killed the careers of lefty specialists, it’s important to have a mixed group of relieves. Another lefty would be huge for Houston.
Because Chafin will have no expectation to close, the contract shouldn’t be all that much. And with the opportunity to pitch for one of the American League’s most consistent clubs, a deal could get done sooner than later.