#2 Astros trade José Urquidy for Steven Okert
Steven Okert is a reliever we said Houston should have traded for at the deadline. The 32-year-old is arbitration eligible for the first time this year, and is projected to earn $1.2 million. With the Astros believed to be struggling financially over their TV contract, Okert would save them $2 million and help them get under the CBT.
Beyond that, he'd also just help reinforce the Astros bullpen. He's a lefty that wouldn't be acquired simply for the sake of being left-handed, but one that can get outs. For his career, Okert holds a 3.70 ERA. His ERA was a little higher last year at 4.45, but his xERA was more in line with his career average at 3.87.
Okert generates a ton of swing and miss, finishing in the 89th percentile in strikeout rate. He's a two-pitch pitcher with his slider and fastball. His slider has been great for his career, but his four-seam did get touched up a bit last year, generating a -8 run value. Get Okert in the Astros pitching lab and let them make the tweaks they've been so prone to do over the years and Houston could have something special.
Urquidy could help reinforce the Marlins rotation as they are rumored to be shopping names like Sixto Sanchez and even Jesus Luzardo. He'd be a nice bridge with many of their prospects on the way and could be a veteran mentor that has won at the highest level to young stars like Eury Perez.