Houston Astros Rumors: The Reliever Market

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Houston Astros Rumors: The Reliever Market

Jul 17, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Astros relief pitcher Luke Gregerson (44) pitches during the ninth inning against the Texas Rangers at Minute Maid Park. The Astros won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

When July first started, it looked like the Astros had one goal for the trade deadline, a top of the rotation type of pitcher. With this target in mind, the CTH writers have focused on the starting pitcher market. We have talked about almost every available starting pitcher on the market; Jeff Luhnow has been recently saying that he might be looking for a power arm in the bullpen. From Evan Drellich’s article, Astros could be looking to add more heat to already effective bullpen, Jeff Luhnow was quoted saying the following.

"“I think you can always use another good arm,” general manager Jeff Luhnow said recently. “You look at the arms we have in the bullpen: we’ve got a sinker baller, a slider guy, different looks. Neshek is a funky guy. The one guy we’re probably missing is the flamethrower guy.” – Luhnow via Drellich"

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Before reading Drellich’s article, I thought that we had a soft throwing bullpen. However, I didn’t realize that they were at the bottom of the league with an average 90.3 MPH according to Fangraphs. With a bullpen that does not have a high average fastball, do they steer away from it? No, in fact, they rank sixth with 62.5% fastballs thrown as a bullpen. As Luhnow mentioned above, they all have different looks, which causes them to not allow the hitters to get comfortable. Plus the Astros bullpen is one of the oldest group on the team, so they have learned how to pitch without the blazing fastball.

The only one who really is a flame thrower right now in the bullpen is Josh Fields, but he can be unhittable for one hitter, and then allows an extra base hit to the next batter. If the Astros are looking to add a power arm, who is available through a trade? Let’s look at some Houston Astros rumors about relievers.

Next: The Trade Candidates