Astros Speculation: Does the Forsythe trade change Rays plans?
By Eric Huysman
Could the Forsythe trade signal a change in plans for the Rays? Could the Astros reopen trade talks for Chris Archer?
While most Astros fans were at the Jeff Bagwell Hall of Fame pep rally party last night, the Dodgers and Rays got together in a trade. Much has been written about the Dodgers’ need for a second baseman. They finally got their man in Logan Forsythe from the Rays in a rare one for one player and prospect switch. The Rays acquired Jose DeLeon, who is one of the top prospects in the game.
DeLeon is the 33rd overall prospect in the majors, now sits as the second top Rays prospect by MLB Pipeline. Forsythe took a slight step back in 2016 but still had a career high 20 homers while batting .264. The Dodgers were after Brian Dozier, but they settled for a poor man’s Dozier instead. This is a win-win deal for both sides but could it signal times of change in Tampa.
Peter Gammons reported that the Astros approached the Rays with a five-player deal for Chris Archer. The Rays turned down the deal and said it wasn’t enough for their ace. The players mentioned were reportedly Francis Martes, Kyle Tucker, and David Paulino as well as two others. As I said at the time, it was a surprising move for both teams at the time. The Rays could want some more major league ready talent.
The Rays could want Joseph Musgrove, but he has not been mention in trade rumors to the Rays yet. That was then. This is now. The White Sox were hesitant to trade players, but when they traded Chris Sale, they started licking their chops of acquiring more talent. The Rays have a decent starting rotation despite trading Matt Moore last year. The batting order could use some help, so they sign Colby Rasmus to help in 2017.
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Now that they have traded their super utility man in Forsythe, the Rays might be trying to do a minor rebuild. While I’m not sure they will trade Archer, it is more likely that they would become more engaged with other teams following this trade. The Rays felt that DeLeon was too much to pass up on, so they pulled the trigger. He could represent a potential replacement for Archer soon.
The Rays are smart. They know that they are in the same division with 3-4 powerhouse teams. Maybe they can rebuild like the Astros did, with eyes to the future.
The Astros have the talent to acquire another starting pitcher, but they are not likely to make another addition before the season starts. Contrary to popular belief, the Astros have a good enough to win games this year. Jeff Luhnow knows this but also knows he might have to add reinforcement at the trade deadline.
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It may cost more at the trade deadline to acquire a starting pitcher. I think Luhnow want’s to see what they have before they weaken their farm system. If a starter is needed to succeed at that point, I see them adding one. However, the Rays could be having a change of heart soon with the taste of prospects.
***Stats from Baseball-Reference***