Sean Pendergast

How Many Houston Astros Will Be All Stars?

Carlos Correa looks in to the stands at Globe Life Field in Arlington.
Carlos Correa looks in to the stands at Globe Life Field in Arlington. Photo by Jack Gorman
Coming into the season, perhaps the two most pressing questions for the Houston Astros centered around the two players who've been the centerpieces of the offensive uprising in 2021. First, Astro fans wanted to know "Was Jose Altuve's abysmal 2020 an aberration, or is his $30 million per year contract about to be a boat anchor?" Second, Astro fans wanted to know " Were Carlos Correa's healthy 2020 and dominant postseason harbingers of a monster contract year in 2021?"

Well, the answers to both question have been about as encouraging as they could possibly be for Astros fans (and Correa's unborn child). Altuve is back to his MVP Level numbers, and Correa is ascending into the actual MVP conversation, leading all shortstops in several categories, and among the top five in the game in Wins Above Replacement.

So, with the All Star Game coming up on July 13, and with voting for starters still ongoing this week, the question we now ask is "How many Astros will participate in the All Star Game, either as a starter or as a reserve. For what it's worth, I put that question to a poll a couple weeks ago, and at the time, here were the results:

These results are not indicative of an optimistic fan base. Most of the fans who chose two or fewer cited some sort of conspiracy against the Astros wrapped in as a sign stealing punishment as reasons why they thought the Astros would only have one or two representatives at the All Star Game. Two weeks later, here is what the fans now think:

A little more optimism, and rightfully so, when you consider, as of Sunday morning, this is what the 2021 Astros are doing compared to the 2019 teams which was an historically great offense:
So, as of this morning, what's our optimism level for the Astros lusted below repping the team in the All Star Game?


EVERYDAY PLAYERS
The Astros have six players that are above the .900 OPS mark right now, and the scary thing is that, by and large, they are all ascending and getting hot right now. It could be a really long summer for Astros opponents, especially once Alex Bregman comes back healthy. Correa and Altuve are near locks to play in the All Star Game, and Yuli has been great, but plays a position deep in talent. Brantley's time missed due to injury hurts him, and Tucker and Alvarez are the future of this team, but probably a half step shy off where they need to be for inclusion.

CARLOS CORREA (SS), 95 percent
JOSE ALTUVE (2B), 95 percent
YULI GURRIEL (1B), 50 percent
MICHAEL BRANTLEY (OF), 30 percent
YORDAN ALVAREZ (DH), 15 percent
KYLE TUCKER (OF), 10 percent

PITCHERS
The Astros have a several pitchers that are putting together fine seasons, but I'm not sure if there is one surefire hammer that is a lock for the All Star Game, like Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole, or Dallas Keuchel in recent seasons. Of the four starters with double digit number of starts, Greinke has the most wins, but the highest ERA. He also has the most "street credit" among his peers around the league who are helping choose the pitching staff. Pressly is the one guy who I might bet on. Other than the outing against the Padres, where he gave up a game tying home run to Fernando Tatis, Jr., he's been lights out.

ZACK GREINKE, 50 percent
RYAN PRESSLY, 45 percent
LANCE MCCULLERS, 40 percent
LUIS GARCIA, 30 percent


Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. weekdays. Also, follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/SeanTPendergast and like him on Facebook at facebook.com/SeanTPendergast.
KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Sean Pendergast is a contributing freelance writer who covers Houston area sports daily in the News section, with periodic columns and features, as well. He also hosts afternoon drive on SportsRadio 610, as well as the post game show for the Houston Texans.
Contact: Sean Pendergast