Given some of the questions that the Astros have with their own rotation right now, it may seem counterintuitive to trade arguably their best pitching prospect in Spencer Arrighetti. However, there are some real reasons to make Spencer available in trade talks this offseason.
The Astros are firmly in their competitive window, but there is a chance that window could start closing soon if more players leave in free agency. That means Houston will need to make moves for impact talent and that likely means having to part ways with near big league ready talent like Arrighetti. Moreover, Spencer is far from a sure thing as he racks up the walks in addition to strikeouts. Those command issues could prove problematic for his short-term projection which may not make him the best fit for Houston anymore.
Joey Loperfido has been a success story for the Astros' scouts and player development as he has turned from a 7th round pick in the 2021 draft that signed for just $72,500 into a legitimate hitting prospect that could be a very valuable trade piece this coming offseason.
Loperfido mashed his way all the way to Triple-A this season with an .880 OPS across three levels and has a tantalizing blend of speed and power at his disposal. However, with all of the outfield talent in the Astros' farm system including Jacob Melton, Colin Barber, and Luiz Baez, Houston can afford to part with him.
With all of the aforementioned outfield talent that Houston still has in the minor leagues, guys with questionable hit tools should be treated as expendable especially if they have a tool that stands out and could garner trade interest. Justin Dirden fits that profile almost perfectly and should be a candidate to be moved.
Dirden possesses impressive raw power and it showed in 2022 when he hit 24 homers and posted his second straight .900+ OPS season. However, the 2023 season was not nearly as kind to him, so if a team is interested in him and the return is right, Dirden should be used to fill out a trade package even if he isn't the headliner.