After a successful second half of the 2021 season as a setup man for the Philadelphia Phillies, Hector Neris became a sought-after pitcher during the offseason. Although the Phillies offered to re-sign him in the same role, the right-hander ultimately decided to join the Houston Astros.
But how did the Astros manage to snag Neris from other interested teams?
Neris as a Setup Man
Hector Neris is a right-handed pitcher who has spent his entire career with the Philadelphia Phillies.
In recent years, he has established himself as a capable and effective setup man, a role that requires him to pitch in the seventh or eighth inning of a game in order to bridge the gap between the starting pitcher and the team’s closer.
During the second half of the 2021 season, Neris was particularly strong in his role as a setup man. He appeared in 38 games after the All-Star break, pitching to a 2.23 ERA and holding opposing batters to just a .190 batting average.
He struck out 47 batters in those 38 innings, demonstrating both his effectiveness and his ability to miss bats.
Given his strong performance in this role, it is not surprising that the Phillies attempted to re-sign Neris to continue in this role for the 2022 season.
However, he ultimately opted to sign with the Houston Astros instead, a team that has had significant success in recent years and that offers Neris the opportunity to compete in the postseason.
While the Phillies may be disappointed to lose Neris, they can take some solace in the fact that they have a number of other options to fill the setup man role. For example, they could turn to fellow right-hander Archie Bradley, who joined the team as a free agent prior to the 2021 season.
Bradley also had a strong second half of 2021, posting a 2.61 ERA and holding opposing batters to a .233 batting average over 23 appearances.
Hector Neris has been a valuable member of the Phillies bullpen in recent years, particularly in his role as a setup man. While the team will miss his contributions, they have other options to fill that role, and they will need to find a way to continue to compete in a highly competitive National League East division.
Other Clubs’ Pursuit
Other Teams That Pursued Neris
Hector Neris was a highly sought-after free agent coming off of a successful season as a relief pitcher for the Philadelphia Phillies. In addition to the Astros, several other teams expressed interest in signing him, including the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, and San Francisco Giants.
The Yankees have long been looking for a reliable late-inning option, and Neris could have provided that for them.
The Red Sox also had a need for bullpen help, and Neris would have complemented their already strong relief corps. Meanwhile, the Giants were looking to build on their strong 2021 season and viewed Neris as a valuable addition to their bullpen.
Reasons Why He Chose the Astros
Ultimately, Neris chose to sign with the Astros, citing their consistent postseason success and the opportunity to win a World Series as factors in his decision. Houston has been to the postseason six times in the last seven seasons and won the World Series in 2017.
In addition to their postseason success, the Astros’ strong roster likely played a role in Neris’ decision. Houston’s bullpen was already one of the best in baseball, and adding Neris to the mix only strengthens it.
They also have a powerful offense and solid starting pitching, giving them a balanced team that can compete at the highest level.
Another factor that may have influenced Neris’ decision is the chance to work with Astros pitching coach Brent Strom.
Strom is highly respected in the league and has a track record of helping pitchers improve their performance. Neris may see the opportunity to work with him as a chance to take his game to the next level.
Overall, Neris’ decision to sign with the Astros was likely influenced by a combination of the team’s success, their strong roster, and the chance to work with a respected pitching coach.
With Neris now on board, the Astros have made an already formidable bullpen even stronger, and they will be a team to watch in the 2022 season.
Astros’ Recent Success
The Houston Astros have been an incredibly successful team in recent years, having made it to the postseason six out of the last seven seasons. This run of success began in 2015 when they made it to the Wild Card game before losing to the New York Yankees.
The following year, they made it to the American League Championship Series (ALCS) but lost to the eventual World Series Champions, the Cleveland Indians.
The Astros’ fortunes changed in 2017 when they won the World Series. Led by Jose Altuve and George Springer, the Astros defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers in the Fall Classic.
Many fans and analysts, however, will remember this championship for the team’s scandal involving sign-stealing.
This controversy, which erupted during the 2019 offseason, led to the dismissal of general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch, a $5 million fine for the team, and the loss of draft picks. Despite this setback, the Astros made it to the postseason in 2020 and 2021.
In contrast, the Philadelphia Phillies have not been as successful as the Astros in recent years. They have not made it to the playoffs since 2011 when they won a franchise-record 102 games and made it to the National League Division Series (NLDS) before losing to the St. Louis Cardinals.
Since then, the Phillies have struggled to compete. They have had just two winning seasons since 2011 and have not been able to break through to the postseason.
The Phillies’ struggles have been especially frustrating for their fans given their high expectations. The team has a large payroll and has signed big-name free agents in recent years, such as Bryce Harper and J.T. Realmuto.
Despite this, the team has not been able to put together a winning season. The hope is that the team’s recent changes, including the hiring of manager Buck Showalter, will help turn things around.
The Astros have been one of the most successful teams in baseball in recent years, making it to the postseason six of the last seven seasons, including a World Series win in 2017.
Meanwhile, the Phillies have not made the playoffs since 2011 and have struggled to compete despite their high payroll and big-name signings.
Neris’ Fit With the Astros
How Neris Fits Into the Astros’ Bullpen
Neris would be a great fit for the Astros’ bullpen given his experience as a closer and as a setup man. With the Astros’ already strong bullpen and a solid closer in Ryan Pressly, Neris could be a valuable addition to the team.
Last season, he had 30 saves and a 3.71 ERA for the Phillies and was particularly efficient in the second half of the season. He had a 1.27 ERA and 41 strikeouts in 28 1/3 innings in his last 27 appearances. He also has a solid track record and a variety of pitches to use in pressure situations, including a fastball, splitter, and slider.
The Astros have been known for their deep bullpen in recent years, and they tend to use a mix of young, up-and-coming players and veterans.
With Neris joining the team, they can bring in a reliable veteran player to help with those high-pressure, late-inning situations. In addition, his history of being used in a setup role could allow the Astros to use him in a variety of situations.
Comparison With His Role With the Phillies
Neris played an important role for the Phillies – he served primarily as their closer before transitioning to a setup man role. As a closer, he had his ups and downs, but he was able to record 30 saves for the team last year.
However, with the Phillies signing Ian Kennedy to be their closer this offseason, they were not able to re-sign Neris as a closer.
As a setup man, Neris really shined. He was able to maintain his composure in high-pressure situations and help lock down victories for the Phillies. Neris’ ability to switch between a closer and setup man is what makes him a valuable asset to any team.
Neris’ fit with the Astros looks promising. He has experience pitching in high-pressure situations and the ability to adapt to different roles. With a strong bullpen already in place, Neris brings experience and depth that can help the Astros make a deep run in the postseason.
Who Snitched on the Astros?
Mike Fiers blew the whistle on the Houston Astros’ sign-stealing scandal. He is a Major League Baseball pitcher. Fiers said he has received death threats. He revealed the Astros’ cheating during the 2017 World Series.
The Astros used cameras to steal signs from opposing teams. The scheme involved banging on trash cans to signal pitches. Fiers played for the Astros during the 2017 season. He was traded to the Oakland A’s in 2018.
Fiers has received support and criticism for his actions. Some players say the Astros should have faced harsher penalties.
Who Signed Hector Neris?
The Houston Astros have made a new acquisition by signing a reliever named Hector Neris. Neris has agreed to a 2-year deal with the Astros for a reported $17 million. Neris, who is a right-handed pitcher, will join the Astros bullpen for the 2022 season.
The 32-year-old Neris has spent his entire career with the Philadelphia Phillies until now. Neris has been a solid reliever for the Phillies and brings experience and consistency to the Astros bullpen.
As a reliever, Neris has a career record of 22-28 with a 3.57 ERA and 396 strikeouts over 383 innings. His best season came in 2019 when he recorded 28 saves and had a 2.93 ERA for the Phillies. The Astros are looking to bolster their bullpen as they prepare for another run at the World Series in 2022.
The addition of Neris gives the Astros more depth in the bullpen and provides another arm that can close out games. Houston will hope that adding Neris to their roster will help to solidify their chances of winning it all next season.
What Was Under Altuve’s Jersey?
Jose Altuve has been accused of wearing a buzzer under his jersey during games to cheat.
Buzzers are small devices that are used to provide a signal or alarm when activated.
How the Allegation Came About
The allegations of buzzers beneath the Astros’ jerseys first surfaced after their 2019 World Series win, with rumors that some players were using electronic devices to cheat.
If the allegations are true, the consequences could be severe for Altuve and the Astros, as using electronic devices to cheat is considered a violation of the game’s rules.
The Astros have already faced significant backlash for their cheating scandal, and if these buzzers allegations are proven true, it will only further damage their reputation and trust within the MLB community.
The Houston Astros were able to add another talented arm to their bullpen in Hector Neris. With a track record of success and postseason experience, Neris could be a valuable asset for the Astros as they look to continue their winning ways in the upcoming season.
Only time will tell how his addition will impact the team’s performance, but it’s clear that the Astros were able to convince Neris that Houston was the right place for him.
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