Jose Abreu (Wikimedia Commons)

Astros could be in the running for Jose Abreu


Cuban slugger Jose Abreu was recently declared a Free Agent and immediately vaulted toward the top of the list of offensive weapons available this offseason. Today, ESPN’s Buster Olney listed the Astros as one of the frontrunners to acquire Abreu’s services. This news comes as somewhat of a surprise, given the Astros current state of rebuild.

Abreu, 27, is younger than any of the MLB Free Agents on the market and that should help him to land a long term deal. He is said to be seeking a 6-year deal in the neighborhood of $54 to $70 million. I would truly be surprised to see Jim Crane throw that much money at any player this offseason. Even if the Astros are interested, it would be unlikely that they would outbid the Rangers for Abreu. Perhaps this is merely a ploy to drive up the price.

Abreu is considered by most scouts to be a more polished hitter than recent Cuban imports Yoenis Cespedes and Yasiel Puig. However, hitting just might be Abreu’s only attribute. Unlike his aforementioned countrymen, Abreu is not a threat on the basepaths and designated hitter is probably his best position. He has primarily played first base in Cuba and the lack of star power at that position in this year’s Free Agent class should also benefit Abreu monetarily.

 

Abreu won the MVP Award for the Cuban National Series League for the 2010-2011 season despite missing 23 games with a shoulder injury. It was the second straight season in which he had put up incredible numbers and flirted with the triple crown. More recently, Abreu went 9 for 25 (.360) with three homers in the 2013 World Baseball Classic.

Abreu has been seen by a ton of scouts and they all agree that the power is there. Some, however, have concerns that his bat speed may only be average and that his tendency to chase sliders out of the strike zone could be a problem at the major league level.

Are the Astros ready to take a $70 million gamble on a player like Abreu? I doubt it. But, you never know. The budget conscious Oakland Athletics surprised everyone when they signed Cespedes two years ago. One team that Olney didn’t mention that is also rumored to be “all in” on Abreu is the Miami Marlins. If I had to venture a guess, I would say South Beach seems like a more likely landing spot for the Free Agent.

 

Tags: Houston Astros Jose Abreu

  • Joshua Nathanael Stallings

    Do not want!

    • astrosince1975

      I’m with you Joshua. I don’t think this guy is worth the money it will cost to get him. A report came out today stating that Abreu has narrowed his list down to the Astros, Red Sox & White Sox. But I will be very surprised if we sign him.

  • Larry

    astrossince1975, I have always like the players the Astros have always got in trdaes & as free agents. I was reading about “Top 5 Free Agents relievers Astros should target.” In my opinion I only like 2 of them the others so-so. I don’t think Kevin Champan is not the answer he is a rookie, but he will never be a Billy Wagner I might be wrong I don’t know much about him. He could be the middle relief. But I give him a ????? cause I don’t know to much about him, do u. But my picks would between Matt Capps & Edward Mujica. Capps biggest saves was in 2010 with 42 saves but it really went down since then. He didn’t pitch in 2013. And on Edward Mujica he is a ex- St. Louis Cardinals & if I am right Jeff Luhnow knows a lot about him, Now since Brent Storm is the new pitching coach. I just have that feeling if the Astros are looking for a closer I think Edward Muijca has the best shot at it. What u think? If the Astros are going to be a winner they better not trade this one. So have u heard anymore on what starting pitcher are they looking at & I am still hoping Corey Hart is Astro soon. I also read that the Astros could go after David Murphy as a back up outfielder & he got some power. I like to know your opinion on who the Astros should go after as a closer..

    • astrosince1975

      Once we get all of the research completed we will be posting an article regarding possible Free Agent additions. As for a closer, I suspect the Astros will look to add 2 or 3 guys that have experience in the set-up role and hope that someone emerges. Stay tuned for more on this later.

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