This article is part of our Mound Musings series.
Over the past five weeks, we have checked in on the spring happenings around each division. Now, the world has been turned upside down with the threat of COVID-19, and the 2020 baseball season has been put on hold. That said, hopefully the virus will soon pass, and our national pastime can safely resume. This sixth segment features a look at the American League West. Hopefully you've had a chance to weigh the pros and cons of the majority of arms competing for rotation spots, and you are prepared to field a value-laden pitching staff when baseball returns for the 2020 season. We're in deep stretch, so let's look at the:
American League West
Houston Astros – You can't wave goodbye to Gerrit Cole and not miss him, but the Astros have a couple veteran starters, a few young guys with upside, and they all have the luxury of pitching in front of an exceptionally potent offense. Justin Verlander and Zack Greinke have been winning games for years, and, despite a few gray hairs, they will probably do it again in 2020. Verlander is recovering from a lat strain, so he could actually benefit from the delay in the season. At age 37, he still pitches like he's 10 years younger. He's not done yet. Greinke remains a bit less appealing to me. Don't get me wrong, he's still a top-of-the-rotation starter, but his strikeout rate is declining, and his fastball only occasionally touches 90 mph these days. Beyond the