Astros ready to begin 2018 season
WEST PALM SPRINGS, Fla. – It has been a long stay here in West Palm Beach for the Astros, and now they are close to packing their bags and returning to Texas.
Sunday is the final game here in the Sunshine State before the World Series champs host the Brewers for a pair of games Monday and Tuesday at Minute Maid Park.
“We are ready to get it done here and have some home cooking and get back to Minute Maid Park,” said Astros manager A.J. Hinch “We’ve known our team, for most part, this has been a boring spring, which is good and not a lot of drama but a lot of preparation, which is good. You wake up and it’s go time. We’ve tried to get them ready mentally. The final games are good, and we’ll be ready for Rangers.”
With the lineup set and roster almost complete, this spring has been fairly quiet for the Astros and Hinch. The starting rotation of Verlander, Keuchel, McCullers, Cole and Morton are set and there is plenty of depth behind them with the likes of Brad Peacock and Collin McHugh.
“When a guy goes down, me and McHugh will be ready whenever they need us,” said Peacock. “Our starting pitchers have been excellent and they set the tone for our whole team. The tone will be set and when we wake up every morning we know our starting pitcher is better than our opponent and that’s a good feeling,” he said.
Final roster cuts are looming, and then it’s showtime as opening day arrives March 29 when the Astros open against the Texas Rangers.
“These decisions will be the toughest for battles. There have been tough senddowns. To be player 26-30, I’ve been there,” Hinch said.
"It’s crushing because you are so close to making an opening day roster. Those won’t be fun ... These guys are not taking anything for granted which I appreciated. They’ve worked hard to get better at something. These guys are hungry to do it again. We won’t take it for granted that we just show up,” he said.
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