Houston Astros fans won’t have to wait long to see if the off-season acquisition of Doug Fister was a smart choice by the Houston braintrust. Fister, the former Nationals and Tigers starter, was named the Astros game one starter for Grapefruit League play beginning on Thursday.
Fister struggled in his second season season in D.C. spending a month on the DL with forearm issues and s;umping to 5-7 with a 4.19 ERA. Houston hopes they have signed the Fister who went 16-6 in 2014 with a 2.41 ERA. Acquired in a free agent deal a month ago, the right-hander is set to make a base salary of $7 million with incentives that could stretch it to $12 million.
The seven year veteran brings a wealth of playoff experience with him having played in the postseason as a key ingerdient of the Detroit Tigers reaching the World Series in 2012. Added to a staff that boast Cy Young winner Dallas Keuchel, 19 game winner Colin McHugh, the young arm of Lance McCullers, a fireballing Mike Fiers and the Astros boast one of the nest rotations in the American League. Throw-in a healthy and productive Scott Feldman and who knows how far this team can go.
So come Thursday afternoon in Clearwater , Florida against the Philadelphia Phillies hapless as they might be, Astros fans will get their first glimpse of Fister and begin to pass judgement on the acquisition that could solidify the starting rotation for 2016.