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Astros Ace Has Encouraging Words After Recent Start

The Houston Astros ace had promising words after his recent Spring Training start.
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Framber Valdez had a rough outing in his first Spring Training start, allowing three earned runs in 1 1/3 innings pitched. The Houston Astros ace gave up five hits and a home run, a concerning first time on the mound for the left-hander.

Spring Training doesn't mean much for Valdez.

Frankly, he can throw to 10 hitters and give up 10 home runs and it's not the end of the world.

That doesn't mean Valdez wants to go out there and give up runs, but it's not the biggest deal if he struggles during this exhibition period. His work during this time of the year is to get a feel for his pitches and get comfortable on the mound.

He did just that in his second start on Monday, and while he gave up four hits in four innings, Valdez was much better this time around.

The ace spoke about his start to Alyson Footer of, saying he felt better than last time he was on the mound.

"I'm getting there. I'm getting to where I want to be."

With Justin Verlander starting the season on the IL, this is Valdez's staff to control. If he can give the Astros the same quality innings he's given them the past two seasons, they should be in a favorable position at the end of the season.

In the past two years, Valdez has thrown in 198-plus innings in each season. He posted a 2.82 ERA in 2022 and a 3.45 in 2023.

The 30-year-old was named an All-Star and finished top-10 in Cy Young voting in both seasons and could be bringing home his first award this year.

Valdez is an important part of this rotation and Houston needs him locked in from the beginning to ensure they get off to a good start.