Valdez could challenge for a spot in the 2019 starting rotation, Andrew Simon of reports.

The Astros will have at least one opening in the rotation, and possibly two depending on how manager A.J. Hinch wants to deploy Brad Peacock. Valdez had an impressive introduction to MLB in 2018, posting a 2.19 ERA in 37 innings, featuring a high-spin curve. Opponents went just 4-for-41 (.098) with 20 strikeouts off the hook while putting 17 of their 21 batted balls on the ground. The potential issue for Valdez is command, evidenced in his 4.69 FIP. The left-hander walked 24 batters (5.8 BB/9) but managed to avoid damage due to the free passes.

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