World Series loss could mark the end of an era for the Astros | Latest News Headlines
World Series loss could mark the end of an era for the Astros
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HOUSTON (AP) – Carlos Correa stood on the steps of the dugout watching Yuli Gurriel melt to end Game 6 of the World Series before slowly walking away and heading towards the Houston clubhouse for what could be the last time.
Atlanta’s 7-0 win over the Astros to win the World Series on Tuesday night could mark the end of an era in Houston.
Having lost Gerrit Cole and George Springer in free agency over the past two years, Houston now faces the distinct possibility that Correa will soon disappear as well.
The star shortstop, who has been part of the franchise since being selected with the first pick in the 2012 draft, is a free agent and there are fears the Astros may not be able to keep him.
Correa has had a strong season, reaching a career-high 26 home runs with 92 RBIs. But perhaps as much as his game, his leadership and his arrogance have been invaluable to this team since he made his debut in 2015. Tuesday was the 79th game of the playoffs he’s been in since helping out. Astros reach the playoffs for the first time since 2005 in their rookie season.
Justin Verlander, who has only pitched one game in the past two seasons due to injury, is also a free agent, as is veteran starting Zack Greinke.
Houston has reached the World Series in three of the past five years and has qualified for the ALCS in each of the past five seasons. The Astros won the championship in 2017, a crown marred by the team’s sign-theft scandal, before falling to the Washington Nationals in seven games in 2019.
Houston’s rise to the crème de la crème of baseball came after losing more than 100 games in three straight seasons from 2011 to 2013.
The Astros made the trip to the World Series this year after missing a game to qualify for the Fall Classic last season. Manager Dusty Baker has led the team for the past two years after being hired following the dismissal of AJ Hinch after being suspended for a year for his role in the cheating scheme.
Like Correa, Baker’s future with the team is also uncertain with his contract ending and no new deals in place.
After such an impressive run, the question is whether the Astros can maintain that success or if their window to being an eternal contender closes. While losing Correa would certainly be a big blow to the team, the Astros have plenty of stars who will be back next year, led by Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and Yordan Alvarez.
Jim Crane, owner of the team since 2011, scoffed at the idea that Houston’s run among the American League’s elite could end when she was mentioned earlier in the playoffs.
“People always refer to the window, (say) the window can close,” he said. “Look, when I’m here the window will always be open.”
After finishing discussing the Houston Window, the billionaire businessman made sure to keep the door open to Correa’s future in Houston.
“I think we have a chance,” Crane said. “I never count anything.”
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