Results tagged ‘ Pence ’

A look back at two years of Astros trades

With the Trade Deadline over, it’s time to reflect on the deals the Astros have made in the past three seasons. Houston has made a flurry of deadline deals in 2010, ’11 and ’12 as it rebuilds and stockpiles prospects.

In that time span, the Astros said goodbye to, among others, Lance Berkman, Roy Oswalt, Hunter Pence, Michael Bourn, Brett Myers, Carlos Lee, J.A. Happ, Brandon Lyon, Wandy Rodriguez and Chris Johnson.

In the month of July of this year alone, they acquired 13 Minor Leaguers and two players to be named later and were the most active team when it came to trading.

Here’s a look at the major deals the Astros have made in the last two years (you can click on the players’ names for his current stats):

Date: July 29, 2010.

General manager: Ed Wade.

Astros receive: LHP J.A. Happ, OF Anthony Gose, SS Jonathan Villar.

Phillies receive: RHP Roy Oswalt, cash.

The skinny: Oswalt had requested a trade after being frustrated with how the Astros were playing. The Astros obliged, getting a low-cost starting pitcher in Happ and a pair of prospects. Gose was immediately shipped to the Blue Jays, and Villar remains one of the team’s top prospects, though he recently broke his hand punching a door.

Date: July 29, 2010.

General manager: Ed Wade.

Astros receive: IF Brett Wallace.

Blue Jays receive: OF Anthony Gose.

The skinny: After acquiring Gose from the Phillies, the Astros immediately turned around and dealt him to the Jays in exchange for Wallace. Considering Wallace was a first baseman, that began speculation that Lance Berkman was on his way out the door.

Date: July 31, 2010.

General manager: Ed Wade.

Astros receive: RHP Mark Melancon, IF Jimmy Paredes.

Yankees receive: 1B Lance Berkman, cash.

The skinny: Berkman had the right to approve any trade, and when the Astros came to him and said they possibly had a deal with the Yanks, he didn’t stand in Houston’s way of getting more young players. Berkman didn’t do much with the Yankees, and Melancon wound up taking over as closer in 2011 before later being shipped to Boston. Paredes has moved around the infield, but he’s one of the most athletic players in the system and is putting up stellar numbers in Triple-A this year.

Date: Dec. 23, 2010.

General manager: Ed Wade.

Astros receive: LHP Wes Musick, RHP Jonnathan Aristil.

Rockies receive: RHP Matt Lindstrom.

The skinny: Lindstrom pitched one year in Houston and was inconsistent while battling to stay healthy, so the Astros spun him to Colorado and took a flier on a pair of Minor League pitchers.

Date: July 19, 2011.

General manager: Ed Wade.

Astros receive: RHP Henry Sosa, RHP Jason Stoffel.

Giants receive: IF Jeff Keppinger.

The skinny: Keppinger was a solid hitter who performed well in Houston, but with the club in rebuilding mode, the Astros dealt him for a pair of Minor League arms. Sosa wound up pitching in the Astros’ rotation last year, but is now playing in Korea. Stoffel is closing at Double-A and has some potential.

Date: July 29, 2011.

General manager: Ed Wade.

Astros receive: RHP Jarred Cosart, IF Jonathan Singleton, RHP Josh Zeid, player to be named later (OF Domingo Santana).

Phillies receive: OF Hunter Pence.

The skinny: Pence was Houston’s best hitter and due to receive a big raise in arbitration, which really didn’t make much sense for the Astros considering the direction the club was going. Thus, the popular outfielder was sent to the contending Phillies, who paid a high price. Cosart and Singleton became Houston’s top two prospects, and some scouts believed Santana might wind up being the best player in the deal. Pence was traded by the Phillies to the Giants a year later.

Date: July 31, 2011.

General manager: Ed Wade.

Astros receive: OF Jordan Schafer, RHP Juan Abreu, RHP Paul Clemens, LHP Brett Oberholtzer.

Braves receive: CF Michael Bourn.

The skinny: Two days after trading Pence to the Phillies, the Astros traded another popular player by sending Houston native Bourn, a Gold Glove outfielder who had come into his own offensively, to the Braves. The haul wasn’t quite as impressive as what the Astros got in return for Pence, but the three Minor League arms have some promise. Schafer hasn’t lived up to potential.

Date: Dec. 14, 2011.

General manager: Jeff Luhnow.

Astros receive: SS Jed Lowrie, RHP Kyle Weiland.

Red Sox receive: RHP Mark Melancon.

The skinny: Luhnow’s first trade as GM appears to be a good one for the Astros, though both Lowrie and Weiland are on the disabled list (Weiland is out for the year). There were questions about Melancon’s ability to close, and he was a disaster in Boston. Lowrie was one of the most productive shortstops in the NL before he injured his leg in July.

Date: March 21, 2012.

General manager: Jeff Luhnow.

Astros receive: LHP Kevin Chapman, player to be name named later (OF D’Andre Toney).

Royals receive: C Humberto Quintero, OF Jason Bourgeois.

The skinny: Quintero and Bourgeois were back-ups who couldn’t crack the starting lineup of a last-place team, and Luhnow managed to trade them for two Minor Leaguers. Chapman has shown some early promise at Double-A, while Toney could be one to watch years down the road. Bourgeois wound up in the Minors with the Royals, who soon cut Quintero.

Date: July 4, 2012.

General manager: Jeff Luhnow.

Astros receive: IF Matt Dominguez, LHP Rob Rasmussen.

Marlins receive: 1B Carlos Lee, cash.

The skinny: The first of five major trades in July, the Marlins were desperate for first base help and gave the Astros two Minor League players for the aging slugger. The Astros were happy to get him off their roster, and were even willing to pay the bulk of his remaining contract. Dominguez was brought up to the Majors, but was sent back down a few days later.

Date: July 20, 2012.

General manager: Jeff Luhnow.

Astros receive: RHP Francisco Cordero, OF Ben Francisco, RHP Asher Wojciechowski, RHP Joe Musgrove, LHP David Rollins, C Carlos Perez, a player to be named later.

Blue Jays receive: LHP J.A. Happ, RHP Brandon Lyon, RHP David Carpenter.

The skinny: The Astros acquired seven players, including four Minor Leaguers and a player to be named later, in a 10-player deal with the Jays. Happ had been with the team two years and could never gain consistency, while Lyon was in the final year of his three-year deal. This trade was more about the Minor League arms the Astros received, while addressing a catching shortage in the system, more than it was about the two big league players they received – Cordero and Francisco.

Date: July 21, 2012.

General manager: Jeff Luhnow.

Astros receive: RHP Matthew Heidenreich, LHP Blair Walters, a player to be named later.

White Sox receive: RHP Brett Myers, cash.

The skinny: With Myers having a good shot at vesting his 2013 option that would have paid him $10 million, the Astros sent him to the White Sox and stockpiled a few more Minor League arms. Myers was having a solid season as closer after starting 66 games the previous two years in Houston.

Date: July 25, 2012.

General manager: Jeff Luhnow.

Astros receive: LHP Rudy Owens, OF Robbie Grossman, LHP Colton Cain.

Pirates receive: LHP Wandy Rodriguez, cash.

The skinny: The rebuilding effort continued as the Astros sent Rodriguez – the last remaining member from the 2005 World Series team – to the Pirates for three more prospects. The Astros had to pay a substantial part of Rodriguez’s remaining contract, but they felt getting more prospect was worth the price.

Date: July 29, 2012.

General manager: Jeff Luhnow.

Astros receive:  IF Bobby Borchering, OF Marc Krauss.

D-backs receive: 3B Chris Johnson.

The skinny: The Astros pulled off their fifth trade of the month. Houston wasn’t actively shopping Johnson, but he had recently gone on a tear and some teams were getting aggressive in their pursuit of the 27-year-old third baseman. Unlike the previous trades in July in which the Astros stockpiled the pitching, the Johnson trade brought a pair of bats, and in the case of Borchering, maybe some much-needed power to the system.

Astros have a deal for Pence

The Astros have reached a deal to send All-Star outfielder Hunter Pence to the Phillies in exchange for four players, including Philadelphia’s top two Minor League prospects, a person close to the negotiations told MLB.com.

The deal, which is subject to the approval Major League Baseball, is expected to be finalized on Friday.

Pence was pulled from the field in the middle of the fifth inning of the Astros’ game against the Brewers on Friday night at Miller Park.

The Astros are receiving right-handed pitcher Jarred Cosart and left-handed outfielder Jonathan Singleton, along with two more players. At least one of the players will be a player to be named later. Cosart is ranked by MLB.com as the Phillies’ top prospect, and Singleton is No. 2.

Pence, 28, entered Friday’s game .309 with 11 homers and 62 RBIs for the Astros and made the National League All-Star team for the second time. He’s making $6.9 million this season and still has two years of arbitration remaining, so any team acquiring him would have him under control for at least two more seasons.

Cosart, 21, grew up in League City, just south of Houston, and was drafted in the 38th round in 2008. He’s got an 18-13 career record with a 3.67 ERA in his career, including 9-8 with a 3.92 ERA this year at Class A Clearwater.

Cosart has electric stuff, with one of the better fastballs in the Minors and a very good curve. He’s lean and projectable and he’s got good command of his stuff.

Singleton, 20, was taken in the eighth round in 2009 and is a career .287 hitter with 25 homers and 136 RBIs in 227 games, including .282 with nine homers and 47 RBIs in 92 games this year.

A high school draftee had an extremely productive first full season, being named the South Atlantic League’s Most Outstanding Major League prospect. He should hit for average and power and has a good approach at the plate.

Although he was a top first base prospect, the Phillies have moved Singleton to the outfield to avoid the Ryan Howard roadblock. He’s taken to it better than expected. He’s manning left field in Clearwater this season.

Pence  burst onto the scene in 2007, hitting .322 with 17 homers and 69 RBIs in his first year with the Astros, who drafted him in the second round in 2004 out of the University of Texas-Arlington. He hit 25 homers in each of the next three seasons, and in 2009 became the 12th Astros outfielder to make the All-Star team.

Pence could be on the move

The Astros appear to be moving closer to trading All-Star right-fielder Hunter Pence, MLB.com has learned.

As of Thursday afternoon, at least six teams are involved in negotiations to acquire Pence, according to a person close to the situation. No deal is imminent, and Astros general manager Ed Wade declined to comment when reached by MLB.com.

The interest in Pence has picked up considerably since Carlos Beltran was acquired by the Giants from the Mets.

KRIV-TV in Houston reported on its website Thursday the Reds, Phillies and Braves, along with three teams in the American League, are in the negotiations.

Astros’ lineup for Monday

The Astros welcome Wandy Rodriguez back from the disabled list tonight to try to snap a four-game losing streak tonight at Minute Maid Park and avoid getting swept in four games by the Atlanta Braves.

Here is the Astros’ lineup:

CF Michael Bourn

SS Clint Barmes

RF Hunter Pence

LF Carlos Lee

2B Jeff Keppinger

1B Brett Wallace

3B Chris Johnson

C J.R. Towles

LHP Wandy Rodriguez

Pence out of Astros lineup

Astros right fielder Hunter Pence, who has a 22-game hitting streak, isn’t in the lineup Sunday. Pence has been dealing with lower back spasms. Jason Bourgeois is getting the start in right field.

Here is the lineup:

CF Michael Bourn

RF Jason Bourgeois

2B Matt Downs

LF Carlos Lee

1B Brett Wallace

3B Chris Johnson

SS Clint Barmes

C Carlos Corporan

RHP Brett Myers

Astros-Braves lineups for Friday

Here are the lineups for tonight’s Astros-Braves game:

ASTROS

CF Michael Bourn

SS Angel Sanchez

RF Hunter Pence

LF Carlos Lee

2B Jeff Keppinger

1B Brett Wallace

3B Chris Johnson

C J.R. Towles

RHP Aneury Rodriguez

BRAVES

CF Jordan Schafer

2B Dan Uggla

3B Chipper Jones

1B Freddie Freeman

SS Alex Gonzalez

LF Eric Hinske

C David Ross

RF Matt Young

P Tim Hudson

Who are the Astros' All-Stars?

I would be surprised if the Astros had more than the minimum one representative when the 2009 All-Star Game starters and reserves are announced at 2 p.m. Sunday. No Astros player had a legitimate chance to get voted in as a starter based on the most recent balloting numbers, but shortstop Miguel Tejada appears to be the most likely to make the National League team.

Tejada entered Saturday ranked first in hits in the NL (103) and multi-hit games (32), tied for first in doubles (26) and was fifth in batting average (.329). Florida shortstop Hanley Ramirez, who leads the league in hitting and was leading the NL in voting, appears to be a shoo-in to make the team in some fashion. Neither Philadelphia’s Jimmy Rollins nor New York’s Jose Reyes were having All-Star caliber years, helping open the door for Tejada to make the team for the second year in a row with the Astros.

Astros outfielders Hunter Pence and Carlos Lee figure to also be in consideration for a reserve spot, and manager Cecil Cooper went as far as to say center fielder Michael Bourn deserved a spot on the All-Star game. Bourn leads the league in steals, triples and infield hits.
 
“I think I would have at least two guys on there,” Cooper said. “Tejada, for me, should be one, and you can take your pick with one of my outfielders. One of them deserves to be on there. I would probably go with – if I had to pick one of three and I was pushed – I would go with Bourn.

“He’s scored a lot of runs and is leading the league in stolen bases and is hitting .290. Those are All-Star numbers. Hunter’s hitting .300 and is one of the top hit guys probably in the league. He doesn’t have the RBIs like a lot of these guys have, but he’s having an All-Star kind of year, and is Carlos.”

Lee as hitting .300 with 12 homers and 47 RBIs and Pence was hitting .306 with 10 homers and 33 RBIs entering Saturday. A factor that could help the Astros land an outfielder on the team is that two of the three leading vote-getters in last week’s balloting update are injured – New York’s Carlos Beltran and Philadelphia’s Raul Ibanez.

Player balloting will determine eight reserve position player and eight pitchers (five starters and three relievers) for both rosters.  Eight more selections, including the extra pitcher, will be made by the managers, with input provided from league officials.

“I don’t really pay much attention to it,” Pence said. “It would be nice, but I definitely haven’t had a good week or two and didn’t do what I needed to do. But it would be a great honor.”

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Astros manager Cecil Cooper said Saturday he isn’t sure how he will handle his pitching staff for the resumption of Thursday’s suspended game against the Washington Nationals. The game, which was suspended May 5 in Washington tied at 10 in the 11th inning, will resume at 6:05 p.m. Thursday at Minute Maid Park.

LaTroy Hawkins was on the mound for the Astros with a man on first base, but Cooper said another pitcher could be used to resume the game if Hawkins pitches a lot of innings prior to Thursday. Cooper has also said Felipe Paulino could get the ball to resume the game. Paulino, who was rocked for nine runs in two innings Friday, would be pitching on normal rest.

“I’m going to wait until we get home Monday and sit and map it out,” Cooper said.

Russ Ortiz will start Thursday’s regularly scheduled game.

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Kenny Baugh, the former Lamar High School and Rice University product drafted in the first round by Detroit in 2001, has been signed by the Astros. Baugh will take Polin Trinidad’s roster spot at Double-A Corpus Christi and start Monday.

Baugh was 6-3 with a 4.52 ERA for the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs of the Independent Atlantic League.

Who are the Astros' All-Stars?

Fan voting for next month’s All-Star Game is winding down, and the Astros have three players who should get strong consideration for the National League team: shortstop Miguel Tejada and outfielders Carlos Lee and Hunter Pence. There are no Astros players even close to getting voted in as a starter like Lance Berkman did last year, but at least one player will be going as a reserve.

Astros manager Cecil Cooper threw center fielder Michael Bourn, who leads the National League in steals, into the All-Star mix.

“I’ve got four guys who have think are capable of doing and have those kinds of numbers,” Cooper said. “Carlos has been very consistent. He’ hitting .300 and has 12 homer and 40-plus RBIs. You look at Hunter and he’s got a great on-base percentage and has 10 home runs and has been productive. He’s a solid hitter, and Michael Bourn has been getting on and has stolen bases. All three should be considered. And Tejada has been outstanding.”

Tejada is a long shot to make the team in a league where Jimmy Rollins of Philadelphia and Hanley Ramirez of Florida are playing. Tejada is a distant fourth in fan voting behind Ramirez, Rollins and Milwaukee’s J.J. Hardy.

In-stadium voting ends Friday and online voting continues into next week.

Competition in the outfield isn’t quite as stellar, and combined with the fact as many as six outfielers could be picked it appears likely Lee and/or Pence have a better shot at making the team than Tejada. Philadelphia’s Raul Ibanez, Milwaukee’s Ryan Braun and New York’s Carlos Beltran are the three leading vote-getters to start, with Alfonso Soriano in fourth, Shane Victorino in fifth and — yes — Manny Ramirez in sixth.

Pence entered Thursday hitting .324 with 10 homers and 29 RBIs, which are certainly All-Star-worthy numbers. Lee was hitting .300 with 12 homers and 43 RBIs.

The Astros don’t have any pitchers All-Star worthy. Yes, Chris Sampson is having a great year, but middle relievers typically don’t make it. Sorry, Sammy.

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Took some time Thursday to look up some numbers. Here’s where the Astros rank in the National League in a few hitting categories:

Runs: 14th at 286

Hits: Fifth at 634

Homers: 11th at 58

Batting average: Fourth at .267

Batting average with bases empty: Fourth at .278

Batting average with runners in scoring position: Eighth at .256

Extra-base hits: 12th at 195

 

 

 

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