Will Astros have to mortgage their future?
Mar 16, 2015; Melbourne, FL, USA; Washington Nationals infielder Denard Span (left) talks with pitcher Mark Appel during the first inning of a spring training baseball game against the Houston Astros at Space Coast Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
That brings us to the next question. Is he the type of player that you trade your high-level prospects for? I believe the answer is yes. What type of prospects is Hamels worth? In order to predict that, let’s revisit some past trades for other starting pitchers.
In 2008, the Milwaukee Brewers traded some of their “top prospects” for CC Sabathia. Those prospects included Matt LaPorta, Zach Jackson, Michael Brantley and reliever Rob Bryson for a two month rental of Sabathia. Michael Brantley has just begun to realize his potential.
In 2013, the Cubs traded Matt Garza to the Rangers for “top prospects” Mike Olt, Justin Grimm, Neil Ramirez and C.J. Edwards. Garza was again a two-month rental. Did either of those trades set the Brewers or Rangers farm system back? Last year, the Detroit Tigers were able to acquire David Price, who at the time was a year and a half away from free agency, for Drew Smyly, Willy Adames and Austin Jackson (who turned into Nick Franklin).
My point is that you will have to give some prospects up to get Cole Hamels, but it is not the doomsday scenario others make it out to be. Wouldn’t a comparable package of Astros be Mark Appel, Brett Oberholtzer, Domingo Santana and Francis Martes?
Finally, there are no guarantees for the successes of any prospects. Isn’t it time we trust in Jeff Luhnow, that he is not going to “mortgage the Astros future” by trading away everyone’s new favorite prospects. No one can predict which prospects will adapt mentally to the major leagues.
Also, there is only enough room on the roster for 25 men and at a certain point you can only protect 40 men before you start losing them in the Rule 5 draft like Delino Deshields. The only facts in this scenario, are that the Astros have the most wins in the American league and that Cole Hamels gives them a serious edge in not only reaching the playoffs, but winning them.
Catch the fever!
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