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MOD: Houston Astros #1

This is the first Mock Organizational diary for the Astros, as we prepare for the mock draft to be held on this site on Saturday, June 4th. The Astros will be one of the most interesting teams to watch in this draft with a lot of questions to be answered.

We're going to do our best to collectively answer those questions, and then to reflect those answers in the picks we make for the first three rounds, at #11, #69 and #99.

Philosophy:

The Astros are undoubtedly in a rebuilding phase. They're in the midst of a rough season early on, but there are definitely signs of hope.

The rebuilding process is always an uncertain one, with the biggest question generally being: "How long will it take?" When it comes to the draft, that's a question worth considering. Should the team be focused on college players with the chance to help out and quickly turn the team around, or should perhaps higher upside high school players be taken, making the wait a bit longer, but with the chance to turn the team into a powerhouse down the road?

Or should that be irrelevant, and should our picks simply be the player we think is best, regardless of their level?

Positional Preference:

The Astros have some nice pieces in place, though how long they'll be with the team is up for debate. While Brett Wallace seems to have a good shot at locking down first base for the foreseeable future, other positions that are in good shape for now may not be down the road. Will the team hold onto Hunter Pence, Michael Bourn, Wandy Rodriguez, and Brett Myers for the long-term? Will the team soon look to move some of them simply to improve the financial situation or to get prospects that help in the future?

The point here being that, in my opinion, it's hard to look at the Astros and use the current team and farm system to make determinations about what position to target in the draft. The team's needs in a few years could be drastically different than the needs today. So while college, junior college or high school is worth debating, my thought is that the position the player plays at should probably be low on our priority list.

That said, is there a consensus among position players on whether pitching or hitting should be targeted?

Budget:

The budget for this draft is likely the most important question we need to answer. The new ownership group has made the draft a focus, but also talks about wisely spending money. 

I think it's certain the Astros will be willing to spend. They're certainly not going to cheap. But to what degree is debatable, and may come into play with the first round pick.

Would the team be willing to spend the big dollars needed to take/sign a player like Archie Bradley, Bubba Starling or even Dylan Bundy (not that they'll all be available at #11, but just for discussion sake)?

Even if the belief is that the Astros will have a big budget for the draft, how would that be spent? Buy a big ticket item in the first round and then focus on signability later? Focus on a signable player in the first round and then find expensive players that fall in rounds two and three? Or just be balanced across the board, not taking any guys with huge price tags, but always being able to take those with modest prices?

_______

These are the three areas I want to focus on with our first MOD, and I look forward to getting all of your feedback. Once we've got those parameters laid out, in the next MOD we'll start focusing on names that fit in. Feel free to share names you like in this thread, but we'll really start focusing on that in the next one.

Thanks, and I look forward to this process!

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