Luhnow: 'I really like the group we have here'

February 19th, 2018

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow on Monday said he doesn't anticipate his team adding players, despite several top free agents still without jobs. He said bluntly that he doesn't think the Astros need anybody else right now. Most of the club's key pieces from its World Series club returned, and the team added pitchers , Joe Smith and in the offseason.

"I really like the group we have here," Luhnow said. "That being said, the first couple of weeks in camp there's always a few things that happen, whether it's players that get injured or players you thought were ready and might not be ready.

"We're going to monitor that. We'd be foolish not to be evaluating and looking. There's a lot of talent still unsigned. We have such a complete club at this point it's hard to envision us doing anything aggressively."

As far as trade rumors surrounding Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto, Luhnow stuck with his policy of not commenting on trade speculation.

:: Spring Training coverage presented by Camping World ::

Eating healthy

Astros third baseman said he has been eating better this offseason and focused his workouts on strengthening his core. Anyone who follows Bregman's Instagram occasionally got glimpses of his intense workouts.

"I really focused on my core and my diet," Bregman said. "I'd be a guy who drank eight Dr Peppers a day and ate pizza and hamburgers for every meal. I kind of made a little bit of a change with that, and now I eat salmon, quinoa, kale and stuff like that. I feel better. That's a good start. My body feels better."

When told by a reporter that "dad bods" are in style, Bregman joked: "Dad bods are, but I don't know how many homers they got in them."

Bregman, who clubbed 19 homers in 556 at-bats last year in his first full season in the big leagues, is seeking to add more power.

"Of course, I think [Aaron] Judge and [Giancarlo] Stanton even want to hit more dingers," Bregman said, referring to the Yankees' sluggers. "Everybody that plays this game wants to continue to do it, and I definitely want to be able to do that. Hopefully, I'll hit a few more."

Focused on 2018

Like teammate , infielder/outfielder is also starting the final year of his contract. And, also like Keuchel, Gonzalez said he doesn't want contract negotiations to be a distraction during the season. Both are represented by agent Scott Boras.

"I think everybody in that situation will think about it," Gonzalez said. "I'm going to try to forget about that during the season and try to have a good year, try to help the team to win again. That's the goal."

Gonzalez, who led the Astros with 90 RBIs last year, should cash in significantly in free agency considering his track record and versatility. He can play all four infield spots and left field.

"I feel Houston is my home," Gonzalez said. "I love the city, I love the fans and I love this team, and in a perfect scenario, I'd like to play here for my whole career."

Luhnow said he's not the least bit worried about distractions stemming from any players' contracts.

"They know what they have to do, go out and perform, and things will take care of themselves," Luhnow said.

Odds and ends

• Astros owner Jim Crane said the Astros' World Series rings have been designed and are at the manufacturer. The organization will hand out about 900 of them, from the players down to the stadium ushers. "Everybody that was a part of helping us win is going to get one," Crane said.

• Luhnow said the club considered calling up top pitching prospect Forrest Whitley last September at 19 years old: "Quite frankly, it wasn't out of consideration that he get called up in September if Lance [McCullers Jr.] hadn't come back healthy and a couple of things happened our way. We had him in preparation to potentially come up and help us in September and October. If that's the case in 2017, it certainly remains the case in 2018. He's a top talent. When we need him, we believe he's going to ready, and he's getting closer every day."