Astros owner Jim Crane said on Monday that the club is actively pursuing a high-end starting pitcher to add to an already formidable rotation that includes Dallas Keuchel, Justin Verlander, Lance McCullers Jr. and Charlie Morton.
The defending World Series champions have been linked this offseason to right-handers Yu Darvish, Jake Arrieta and Chris Archer, among other hurlers.
Crane said while attending an event at Houston's City Hall to open the club's World Series trophy tour:
"I've been told that on paper we have the best team in baseball, but paper doesn't win titles."
Crane also said that Houston is not limiting its options to the free-agent market.
"I think with the depth of our farm system, where some of the guys are going to be blocked for some time, it might be prudent to make a move if we can get a deal done that makes sense."
Houston has a window to win at least a couple of more titles with the great generation of players it has right now before they go into free-agency.
The Astros are basically in the same position the Kansas City Royals were a couple years ago, small markets have small windows of success and they have to take advantage of those opportunities which is what the team appears to be thinking.
Their current core with players like Keuchel, José Altuve, Alex Bregman, Carlos Correa, and George Springer will have at least this next season together but could start losing pieces starting with Keuchel who is on his last year of arbitration.
That's why getting another starting pitcher could be very important moving forward for the Astros.
The big thing is the Astros still have a great farm system to maybe extend that window of success, but do you trade those pieces now and maybe hinder your team 5 to 6 years in the future or go after a piece that will help you know but could be gone in 3 to 4 years?
That is the big question.