The Astros offense needs help. Multiple players in the lineup have underachieved, Yordan Alvarez is going to miss a month with an oblique injury, and it's still unknown what, if anything, Michael Brantley will contribute this season.
Corey Julks has played in 51 games this season--36 of which have come in left field and 12 at DH. While Julks is a capable big leaguer, a team isn't going to win a World Series with his bat in the lineup every day.
Dusty Baker still remains reluctant to commit to Chas McCormick, who has the third-highest OPS and OPS+ on the team. He's also reluctant to give at-bats to Yainer Diaz, who's .760 OPS is one point lower than Chas' .761.
For whatever reason, Dusty won't play the best offensive lineup for a team desperate to score runs. In the spirit of Moneyball, Dana Brown may need to tell Dusty he can't start Julks because he's been traded.
In all seriousness, it's unlikely Brantley can be counted on for much contribution this season. The Astros need another bat or two to boost the offense.
Let's look at three outfield/DH candidates the Astros could trade for at the deadline.
#1 Luis Robert Jr.
He'd be the most expensive option, but he'd also be the best addition. Robert Jr. is currently hitting .264 with an .859 OPS. His 17 home runs would provide some much needed thump to a lineup desperate for power.
At times, Robert has gotten himself in hot water for not hustling, but the Astros clubhouse and veteran leadership coupled with the ability to play for a contender would help shore that up.
He currently holds a 2.9 bWAR, which would be the highest on the team.
Robert is under contract through 2025, with club options in 2026 and 2027. He'd cost a decent amount, but the Astros depth of outfield prospects and logjam at the big league level could help push the deal across.
He's played exclusively center field in the big leagues, so it's unknown how he would profile in a corner, but if Jake Meyers were to go and Chas stayed, Chas could play left while Robert in center and Kyle Tucker in right.
If everybody gets healthy, a playoff outfield of Alvarez, Robert and Tucker with Brantley as the DH turns what is currently a weak lineup into one of the best in the game. Chas/Jake could then function as the late game pinch runner.
If the Astros want to give themselves their best chance at repeating, Luis Robert Jr. needs to find himself in Houston after the deadline.