Astros History

Astros: Reviewing the 2015 Ken Giles trade with Phillies

OAKLAND, CA - MAY 09: Ken Giles #53 of the Houston Astros pitches against the Oakland Athletics in the ninth inning at Oakland Alameda Coliseum on May 9, 2018 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - MAY 09: Ken Giles #53 of the Houston Astros pitches against the Oakland Athletics in the ninth inning at Oakland Alameda Coliseum on May 9, 2018 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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PHILADELPHIA, PA – SEPTEMBER 27: Vince Velasquez #21 of the Philadelphia Phillies throws a pitch against the Miami Marlins at Citizens Bank Park on September 27, 2019 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Phillies defeated the Marlins 5-4 in fifteenth inning. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA – SEPTEMBER 27: Vince Velasquez #21 of the Philadelphia Phillies throws a pitch against the Miami Marlins at Citizens Bank Park on September 27, 2019 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Phillies defeated the Marlins 5-4 in fifteenth inning. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

What the Astros Gave Up

Velasquez made 19 appearances in his rookie year with the Astros in 2015, compiling a 4.37 ERA in seven starts and 12 relief appearances. He’s been in and out of the Phillies’ rotation the past four years, working to a 4.70 ERA in 92 starts and 11 relief appearances. His talent was never in question, but he’s struggled to put it all together in the majors.

Oberholtzer had pitched to a 3.94 ERA in parts of three seasons with the Astros, but didn’t last a full season in Philly. The left-hander put up a 4.83 ERA in 26 relief appearances before going to the Angels on a waiver claim and struggling to an 8.55 ERA in 11 appearances. He hasn’t pitched in the majors since.

Appel is best known for being the No. 1 overall draft pick in 2013, a can’t-miss prospect who simply missed. His star had waned by the time of this trade, and though he did reach Triple-A, he never found success there in three seasons. His last professional season was 2017.

Eshelman reached the majors in 2019, but it was with the Orioles. The Phillies traded him to Baltimore in June 2019 for international bonus slot money, and he proceeded to pitch to a 6.50 ERA in 36 innings.

Harold Arauz has yet to reach the major leagues and is no longer with the Phillies. He pitched for the Cardinals’ Double-A and Triple-A affiliates in 2019 with little success. He does have a career 3.96 ERA in the minors, but that’s due to success in the low minors and struggles in the upper minors.

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