Manzella on way to Houston as trade winds blow
Astros shortstop Tommy Manzella is on his way to Houston following a rehab stint at Triple-A Round Rock, but it remains to be seen when he will be activated and what corresponding roster move might be made by the club.
Manzella, out two months with a fractured finger, hit .366 with one homer and five RBIs in 11 games combined between Double-A Corpus Christi and Triple-A Round Rock. He’ll arrive in Houston today along with left-hander Fernando Abad, who was recalled following Wednesday’s game when Matt Lindstrom was put on the disabled list.
The Astros close out a 10-game home stand tonight against the Mets before leaving on a 10-game road trip that begins Friday night in Miami against Florida and it appears Manzella will be making the trip.
Houston has informed other clubs that veteran infielder Geoff Blum and third baseman Pedro Feliz could be had in trades, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. The Cardinals have had some contact with the Astros about acquiring Blum, but there is nothing serious in the works.
Feliz, who has been a bust after a signing a one-year, $4.5-million deal, could be a fit for the Braves, who have also been in touch with the Astros and are searching for help at third base in the wake of Chipper Jones’ season-ending knee injury.
Feliz is hitting .221 with four homers and 31 RBIs in 289 at-bats and lost his starting to job to rookie Chris Johnson in July.
Manzella could also be used as insurance if the Astros decide they need to put starting second baseman Jeff Keppinger on the disabled list. He’s missed the last two games with a sprained left big toe, but is listed as day-to-day.
Blum has been starting at second in place of Keppinger and hit a game-tying homer in the ninth inning Wednesday, but moving him without a healthy Keppinger would leave the Astros without a second baseman.