Astros Add Another Trade Deadline Ace
There are two long-established reasons MLB organizations have prospects in their system.
To help the big club:
- Win a pennant at some point in the future, and
- Acquire established MLB players that may help win a pennant now.
Sometimes the second point seems to be forgotten, but not by the Houston Astros.
Enough talent -- or perceived talent -- to tip the scales in their favor when seeking trade deadline deals.
- Justin Verlander was acquired for three prospects who've yet to see the light of MLB day;
- OK, Gerrit Cole was an off-season acquisition from Pittsburgh, who're still kinda waiting for a return; and now,
- Zack Greinke, who cost the 'Stros four prospects when the deal got sealed two minutes before the deadline:
For the record, even after the trade, Bovada still has the Los Angeles Dodgers as World Series favorites at +275, but Houston's just caught them on the board.
It must be nice that blockbuster acquisitions like this aren't made for clinching divisions -- only Oakland's within sight in their rear-view mirror -- it's made to win World Series rings.
One post-season does not a sample size make, but this one's shaping up to be the trade deadline holders vs the dealers.
- Current division leaders like the New York Yankees and St Louis Cardinals, for one reason or another, stood pat.
- Other division leaders like the Los Angeles Dodgers and Minnesota Twins, did a bitta tweaking around the roster fringes, while
- The Astros and Atlanta Braves went for it.
Even more interesting, the lure of a Wild Card spot isn't viewed as intensely by teams as it is by fans. It's likely this is another reason why the end of July was relatively quite.
Not in Houston, though. They're probably already lining up for playoff vouchers.
And waiting to use all of them.