The Astros were busy on Monday, ahead of the Tuesday deadline. While they might not be done yet, here are my thoughts on the three trades they have pulled off.
1. Three Team Trade with Orioles and Rays
Astros Acquire: 1B/OF Trey Mancini (From Orioles)
RHP Jayden Murray (From Rays)
Orioles Acquire: RHP Seth Johnson (From Rays)
RHP Chayce McDermott (From Astros)
Rays Acquire: OF Jose Siri (From Astros)
I love this deal for the Astros overall. They pay a very small price for a proven and needed bat in this lineup. Scouts might be high on McDermott, but the results so far do not look great and he is at best years away from making an impact at the big league level.
The Astros were in desperate need of some right handed thump and that should be exactly what they get out of Mancini who could be around next year as well due to his ten million dollar player option for 2023. The slugging numbers are down for him this season, but getting out of Baltimore and their now extremely pitcher friendly park should do wonders for him. My guess is the Astros will hide him in left in home games and use him at first and DH in the road games.
2. Trade with Boston Red Sox
Astros Acquire: C Christian Vázquez
Red Sox Acquire: INF/OF Enmanuel Valdez
OF Wilyer Abreu
The Astros pay a premium here to fill a very big need, but for a true rental. The club desperately needed a legit option to play behind Maldonado and that is what they receive in this deal. There will for sure be games in the postseason where you have to pinch hit for Maldonado early in the game and Vázquez is a wonderful option to come in for him in those spots.
Valdez is the piece that really hurts to lose here as he was having the best year of his minor league career. Maybe the Astros are selling high here given that he has never been this good before. A very small guy, some might wonder how and where he projects in the big leagues. But the player is having a big year and to get someone that a lot of teams were after, it is going to hurt a little to get it done.
3. Trade with Atlanta Braves
Astros Acquire: LHP Will Smith
Braves Acquire: RHP Jake Odorizzi
This trade has a bit of your junk for my junk feel to it, but one that can fill a need for both clubs. The Braves desperately needed a starter and they help the Astros out by guaranteeing that Odorizzi’s money is not on the books next season.
The Astros here take a flier on a lefty in the bullpen, hoping he gets right, but not absolutely needing him too. The Astros have pitched extremely well against left handed hitters this season, so it will take Smith looking completely the opposite of what he was in Atlanta to secure a spot on a postseason roster.
For more of my thoughts on the first two deals the Astros made yesterday, check out the latest edition of the Crawford Box-Cast, brought to you by Karbach Brewing.