Pass Or Pursue: Deciding Which Astros Trade Deadline Targets Are Worth Going After

The Astros have been linked to many names with the trade deadline approaching. Let's take a look at which names are worth pursuing and which should be left untouched.
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Mitch Keller
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The Astros should pursue Mitch Keller and David Bednar.

The Pirates are for whatever reason taking calls on Mitch Keller and David Bednar. Dana Brown should be on the phone immediately.

Keller had a dominant first half in Pittsburgh, posting a 3.31 ERA and 1.12 WHIP in his first 19 starts. His first two out of the break have been nightmarish, allowing 14 earned runs in 11 innings. Two bad starts shouldn't scare Houston away.

He's changed his pitch repertoire this year, throwing his four-seam less frequently and to far greater success, posting a run value of 8. He also added a cutter he has thrown 23% of the time, and like the rest of the league, has embraced the sweeper.

Getting Keller to Houston gives them a young and controllable arm for two-and-a-half seasons.

David Bednar also would be a massive add for Houston. The Pirates closer doesn't hit free agency until 2027, and would give Houston a wipeout leverage reliever for years to come. Over the last three seasons, Bednar has posted a 2.13 ERA and 1.03 WHIP, striking out 11.5 per nine. He's absolutely disgusting in the back of the bullpen, and would make every team in baseball better.

The Astros don't have any prospects that should be deemed untouchable, but they also shouldn't empty a shallow farm system for rentals. Keller and Bednar are far from rentals. Keller gives the Astros a true #3, and when coupled with a returning Urquidy, would allow them to keep innings off of Javier and Brown down the stretch. Bednar gives Houston another wipeout reliever, helping keep Abreu, Neris, Maton and Pressly fresh down the stretch.

That type of return is worth parting with some of their best prospects (and big league talent) over.

The Pirates farm system is absolutely loaded, but they are somehow lacking in outfield prospects. Bryan Reynolds is there for the foreseeable future, Jack Suwinski has had a breakout season, and Henry Davis is currently playing right field after coming up as a catcher, but with no reinforcements behind them, the Astros and their outfield depth could be a great suitor for Pittsburgh if they do sell.

Jake Meyers, Drew Gilbert, Jacob Melton, and Collin Barber would all head to Pittsburgh in a deal. Some combination of Spencer Arrighetti, Joey Loperfido, Zach Dezenzo, Brandon Bielak and Miguel Ullola would likely head out as well.

It would be costly, but it's the type of move that solidifies the Astros as the class of the American League this season and keeps the window open for the next few years to come.