The Astros have less than 12 hours to decide whether of not to offer arbitration to their free agents. The big decisions, according to an article by Alyson Footer at Astros.com, concern Doug Brocail and Randy Wolf. Brocail is a type A free agent(two draft picks), Wolf a type B(one pick), meaning the club will get compensation in the form of 2009 draft picks if arbitration is offered and the players end up elsewhere. According to Footer, the club will likely not offer arbitration to Mark Loretta who is a type B free agent.
The Astros eyes are likely also on St. Louis and Russ Springer. Springer is a type A free agent. The Astros' reluctance to part with draft picks would probably prevent them from pursuing Springer if the Cardinals offer him arbitration today.