The Astros continue to make good on their promise to be active this offseason with another free agent acquisition.
Per Jake Kaplan of the Houston Chronicle, the former Oakland Athletic now joins the Houston outfield on a 4-year, $52 million contract. Reddick, 29, will bring his career 106 OPS+ and Gold Glove-caliber defense to the Astros 25-man roster. He spent part of the 2016 season with the A’s and Los Angeles Dodgers after starting his career with the Boston Red Sox.
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Reddick’s next stop in Houston will bring the veteran outfielder to his fourth major league franchise. And the goal for him is to bring another veteran presence to a young clubhouse alongside McCann. In conjunction with his skills. This could be a beneficial pairing for both sides.
However, did the Astros make a wise decision to lock up Reddick to a four-year commitment?
It depends on who you ask and what quantifies as value in your eyes.
From a baseball standpoint, Reddick in theory will likely be on the downside of his career at some point during this deal. Some may even make the argument that the erosion of productivity has already begun. It is clear that he won’t reach that ridiculous 2012 level of power when he hit 32 home runs. In fact, Reddick hasn’t surpass 20 dingers in a season since then.
But he will not strike out like the Astros have been known to do in recent years. This past season he only struck out 56 times compared to 39 walks. The year before was 65 strikeouts to 49 walks. And he bats left-handed, which was one of the few needs that the Astros had this offseason to address.
Then there is veteran presence that Reddick will bring to a clubhouse that perhaps needs a touch of maturity. But once again, it is near impossible to quantify team chemistry and leadership. Odds are though that Reddick will be a valuable teammate in terms of experience and playing ability that he still offers.
While the deal may be a bit long for a player like Reddick, odds are that the fourth year was what cinched the deal for Houston. And if upfront the team receives value from the veteran outfielder then the later portion of the contract is viewed more favorably.
**Statistics courtesy of Baseball Reference**