The Astros made their final trade of the 2012 season yesterday afternoon when the club announced that they had traded OF, Ben Francisco to the Tampa Bay Rays for a player to be named later. Francisco was acquired in the ten player mega-deal with the Toronto Blue Jays on July 20 that sent J.A. Happ, David Carpenter and Brandon Lyon to Toronto while the Astros received Francisco, Francisco Cordero, Asher Wojciechowski, David Rollins, Carlos Perez, Joseph Musgrove and a player to be named later (later named as Kevin Comer).
Ben Francisco is a nice enough player. He has never and will never blow anyone away with his power or defense, but he is a nice piece on a contending club like the Rays. He was also in the last year of his deal and clearly was not in the future plans for the Astros. As for the player to be named later, I wouldn’t expect much, but then again, this is Jeff Luhnow we are talking about. The same Jeff Luhnow who was able to get five prospects in the aforementioned Toronto deal and the same Jeff Luhnow that was able to trade Carlos Lee twice in less than a week.
This marks yet another trade the Astros have made where we simply send out a veteran who has no future with our club for prospects. I have absolutely no problem with that plan this season. Some have criticized it lately since the big league team is getting hammered, but, you have to look at the big picture here. We weren’t going to contend this year anyway and our minor league system was on its way back up. The trades made have greatly improved our system and depth. I don’t know if the player to be named later in this deal will end up doing anything significant with the Astros but at least its a player who could have some sort of future with our club.