Earlier this week I suggested that the Astros make a run at arguably the highest profile free agent this offseason. Maybe it is too early in their plan to sign a healthy and dominant Cy-Young pitcher. Another route is to take a risk with a player who is finishing the 2014 season on the disabled list: Josh Beckett.
I am aware that many Houston fans would be wary of signing a guy who ended the prior season on the disabled list. Look no further than last December. Jesse Crain was brought in on a 1-year contract. However that deal has essentially been irrelevant.
Crain has yet to pitch at all this season. He has been rehabbing from a series of injuries. The primary problem was his biceps surgery last October. Jesse has failed to appear in any action since before the 2013 All-Star Break.
The Houston Astros should consider Josh Beckett independent of the Crain situation. The two players have different injuries. Of course the Astros have access to more information and will do their own due diligence with deciding who to sign.
Beckett is in a somewhat similar situation. His injuries have been more prolonged as he missed part of the 2013 season due to disabled list stints. It has been announced that he is not likely to return to the Dodgers’ rotation this season.
While it is bad news for the Dodgers playoff chances, perhaps some teams will have more of a shot to acquire his services this offseason. Many players have signed short-term contracts as a test to make sure that they are healthy. And while Beckett is aging, this was his age-34 season.
Josh had been performing well in this platform year. While his 4.33 FIP certainly is drastically different from his 2.88 earned run average, his 8.3 SO/9 is in line with his career average.
Bringing Beckett to Houston makes sense for a few reasons. Sure he has experienced some injuries lately but is certainly productive when healthy. Josh graduated from Spring HS in 1999, the year that he was drafted 2nd overall. Last offseason the Astros brought Crain due to his ties to the city through the University of Houston.
This year the Astros could give Beckett a one-year deal with an option for the 2016 season. Who knows, maybe Josh Beckett will return to his dominant form and be able to retire as a Houston Astro.