- Associated Press - Friday, February 19, 2016

KISSIMMEE, Fla. (AP) - Scott Feldman looked around the same clubhouse in which he prepared to be the opening-day starter for the Houston Astros two years ago.

“This is totally different from 2014, for sure,” the 33-year-old right-hander said before Friday’s first workout for pitchers and catchers.

Feldman entered that season as the closest to an ace on a team that had come off three last-place finishes and improved to 70-92.

On Friday he looked around and saw AL Cy Young Award winner Dallas Keuchel, who anchored a staff that led the league with a 3.57 ERA and helped the Astros reach the postseason for the first time in a decade,

With the additions of Doug Fister and Mike Fiers, Feldman will be competing to regain his spot in the rotation after a season cut short by a shoulder injury.

“This year we have higher expectations. The rest of the league and the fans know we have a good team,” Feldman said.

Keuchel went 20-8 with a 2.48 ERA and won twice in the playoffs.

“I wanted to get this team some respect, not just in Houston but out in the country,” he said. “I think we earned that, and that’s one of the fun things going into this season. It seems like just yesterday we were outsiders, the team of the future. Now everybody’s on the bandwagon.”

All pitchers and catchers were in camp as the Astros went through their first organized workouts. Several of the regulars also worked out, including Rookie of the Year Carlos Correa, who arrived Friday. The first full-squad workout is scheduled for Tuesday.

The only injury concerns, according to manager A.J. Hinch, are designated hitter Evan Gattis’ recovery from sports hernia surgery and a reliever Luke Gregerson’s minor oblique strain.

“I think the way teams look at us is a little different, but I don’t really care about anything external right now,” he said. “I think we’re going to focus on our clubhouse and what we need to do.”

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