Astros' young players preparing for future

Astros' young players preparing for future

CINCINNATI -- The Astros have made it clear that they're using the final stretch of the season to evaluate their youth and begin to rebuild for the future.

Houston has certainly had its fair share of struggles this season, but the club also has the youngest active Major League roster, with an average age of 26.2.

The Astros have used 50 different players this season, including 11 rookies, leaving room for their young roster to grow and develop.

"Everyone out here has their own opportunities to prove themselves in the big leagues," said outfielder Justin Maxwell. "I think individually everyone wants to do their best and as a team you want to finish the season on a strong note. The only way to do that is to win some games and go into next Spring Training with the attitude of winning."

Maxwell is one of the many players benefiting from the increased playing time, seeing action in 101 games this season and batting .228 with 13 homers and 39 RBIs entering Friday.

The most the four-year veteran had played prior to 2012 was in 2010 with the Nationals, when he played in 67 games.

Maxwell despite the challenges the club has faced this season, the experience the young players are taking will pay off in the future.

"This is the most at-bats I've had and the longest I've stayed without being optioned or recalled, so I'm really grateful to the Astros organization for the opportunity to play here," Maxwell said. "You only learn through experience, so if everyone can take it positively even though we've been struggling as a team, we're going to be better next year."