Originally posted on Fox Sports Houston  |  Last updated 2/28/12
Usually it's a contending team, lacking other options, that considers transforming a starter to a closer. Other times, a team will overspend on the free-agent market for a reliable closer, hoping he's the difference between staying home and making the playoffs. The idea is that, in a division race, every lead is precious. Stability at the back of the bullpen is huge for a team on the cusp. Bad teams worry about their closer lastly. Except, that is, for the Houston Astros, who this week announced that veteran starter Brett Myers is now the club's closer. Citing an abundance of starters and a lack of reliable relievers on the roster, the Astros decided they need Myers to move to the bullpen. Why is a team that could very well lose 100 games or more worried about a closer? More important, why are the Astros taking a guy who has chewed up well over 200 innings in each of the past two seasons and hiding him in the bullpen? How many significant leads do the Astros expect to have? Oh, and there's the fact that Myers is due about 11 million this year. Aren't those dollars better spent on a guy that can give you six or seven innings per outing? Legitimate questions all. But the men who made the decision general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager Brad Mills, did the right thing. Luhnow pointed out that when one takes the drop-off from Myers' starts to whoever replaces him in the rotation and compares that to the upgrade at closer, the decision makes sense. Good point. But there's more to it than that. This season is essentially a 162-game tryout camp for the club's young players, including pitchers. So while Myers' old spot in the rotation might initially go to a veteran like Livan Hernandez or Zach Duke, eventually a prospect could occupy that role this season. And, even in a rebuilding situation, there's something to be said for not blowing late-inning leads. The Astros had a 20-28 record in games decided by one run last season. So late-inning stability can only help. The move also could prove to be a win-win for Myers and the club beyond end-of-game results. Myers is entering the final year of his contract, and a successful season as a closer would only raise his value as a free agent, and perhaps, prolong his career. (It should be noted that Myers has a club option for 2013, which now could vest based on his performance as a reliever.) From the Astros' point of view, if Myers is a reliable closer in the first half of the season, he has value on the trade market. He could very well become a coveted piece by the trade deadline. Give Luhnow and Mills aren't exactly thinking outside the box, because Myers has been a closer before, having saved 21 games for the Phillies in 2007. But it was a well-thought-out idea that upgrades one area of the team significantly with little risk. Actually, virtually no risk. After all, what's the downside? It's not as if the Astros' pennant chances could go up in flames because of this decision.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Paul George extremely critical of Pacers following trade deadline

Chris Bosh joining TNT as analyst

Cameron Payne will have chance to shine with Bulls

Danny Ainge opens up about why Celtics didn’t make a trade before deadline

Kevin Durant wants to be NBA GM or owner after playing career

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Mavericks discussing buyout with Deron Williams

T-Wolves reportedly backed away from Ricky Rubio-Derrick Rose trade

DeMarcus Cousins calls duo with Anthony Davis ‘Fire and Ice’

Reasons why 76ers got so little for Nerlens Noel emerge

John Lynch: 49ers ‘absolutely’ need to improve at QB position

Report: Raptors trade Jared Sullinger, two future picks to Suns for P.J. Tucker

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Box Score 2/23: Gillon's buzzer-beater blast for the win

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

Box Score 2/22: Not everyone is happy with the new intentional walk rule

Teams and players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Streaming sports docuseries you don't want to miss

The 'Pete Rose instead of Kareem? Surely, you can't be serious' quiz

Teams that can prevent a Cavs-Warriors NBA Finals three-peat

The NFL off-season is a passer’s fancy

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher who has recorded 10 or more shutouts in a single season

The top 10 MLB third basemen heading into spring training

The Aesthetic: Pushing the boundaries of the three-pointer

NBA coaches who should be fired soon

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher to win the MVP award

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker