Sport MLB trade rumors: Chris Archer leads list of 'high-end' starters Astros should pursue

20:06  09 january  2018
20:06  09 january  2018 Source:

MLB trade rumors: Astros acquire Gerrit Cole from Pirates

  MLB trade rumors: Astros acquire Gerrit Cole from Pirates The Astros have been in on Gerrit Cole since last summer, and it looks like they finally got him.According to, Houston has acquired Gerrit Cole from the Pirates. It has not been reported who the deal is for yet.

2017-18 MLB Free Agent List . Projected Arbitration Salaries For 2018. MLB Depth Charts. Go To Pro Football Rumors . AL Rumors : Rays, Archer , Longoria, Yanks, White Sox, Machado, Red Sox. The Astros and Phillies have interest in Rays right-hander Chris Archer , joining a slew of previously

Crane confirmed Monday that the Astros are "actively pursuing " a high - end starting pitcher to help bolster an already strong rotation. Crane mentioning the farm system also means a trade is in play. Tigers ace Michael Fulmer, Pirates starter Gerrit Cole and Rays All-Star Chris Archer could all be

The Astros want to add another high-end pitcher to their rotation.

We know this because the team's owner, Jim Crane, told everyone the reigning World Series champions are looking for another high-end starting pitcher. That's about as open and honest of an admission as you'll ever see from a team in the offseason. Pretty refreshing, actually.

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The thing is, it's not like the Astros have a bare-bones rotation. Quite the opposite. They have an excellent rotation for 2018, a rotation that's very capable of leading the club to another World Series title: Justin Verlander and Dallas Keuchel up top, followed by Lance McCullers Jr. (and his nasty curveball) and Charlie Morton, with Brad Peacock and Colin McHugh as outstanding fifth-spot options.

MLB trade news: Astros actually trade for Gerrit Cole

  MLB trade news: Astros actually trade for Gerrit Cole The Astros thought they had a trade done for the 27-year-old Wednesday, but appear to actually have one done Saturday.The Astros gave pitchers Joe Musgrove and Michael Feliz and third baseman Colin Moran to the Pirates in return. Prospect Jason Martin is also heading to Pittsburgh.

Five names Astros should consider in quest to add high - end starter . Gerrit Cole is one of the high - end starters the Houston Astros are reportedly looking at. Specifically, he told MLB .com’s Alyson Footer they’re “actively pursuing a high - end starter .”

Houston Astros trade and free agent rumors from 2017-18 MLB Free Agent List . Projected Arbitration Salaries For 2018. MLB Depth Charts. Astros Interested In Chris Archer .

But there are time restrictions with this group. Barring extensions, Keuchel and Morton are set to become free agents after 2018. And, yes, they'd love to keep those guys, but backup plans aren't a bad thing. Verlander was awesome for the Astros last year, but he'll be 35 in February and will be a free agent after 2019 (the club waived his vesting option for 2020 as part of the trade agreement). McHugh is a free agent after 2019, too. Peacock (free agent after 2020) and McCullers (after 2021) are the only two under control for more than two seasons, though they do have highly touted prospects waiting their turn in the minors.

So, yeah. There are potential upgrades that can be made as the Astros look to cement their status as perennial contender for the next several years. Keep that in mind when thinking about potential additions; they aren't likely to be focused on shopping for guys who will soon be free agents.

MLB rumors: Astros owner says team is 'actively pursuing' high-end starter

  MLB rumors: Astros owner says team is 'actively pursuing' high-end starter The Astros are in the market for a top-end starting pitcher.Crane confirmed Monday that the Astros are "actively pursuing" a high-end starting pitcher to help bolster an already strong rotation.

MLB Daily Dish MLB Trade Rumors and Signings. Log In or Sign Up. The Astros and Phillies are now looking into acquiring Rays starter Chris Archer , according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.

PITTSBURGH, PA – JUNE 29: Chris Archer . Add in that Houston will be without David Paulino the rest of the way due to his PED suspension and the Astros could be looking for a third high - end starter to solidify their playoff rotation. MLB Trade Rumors .

So what are Houston's options? There are plenty of them out there. Let's take a look.

Jake Arrieta, free agent

Thoughts: Arrieta won the 2015 NL Cy Young with an incredible season — 1.77 ERA, 5.9 H/9, 4.92 K/BB, etc. — but he hasn't been quite as dominant the past two years. In 2017 he made 31 starts, posted a 3.53 ERA/4.16 FIP and struck out 163 batters in 168 1/3 innings. Still very solid. He has a solid track record in the postseason (3.09 ERA in nine starts), and he only allowed one earned run in 10 2/3 playoff innings last season, though he did walk 10 hitters. That October track record has to be appealing to the Astros, because at this point winning more World Series titles is pretty much the only goal. It is, though, fair to wonder what the next couple of seasons might bring. Arrieta will be 32 in March, and his velocity did dip a bit last year; his four-seam fastball clocked in at 92.67, down from 94.93 in his Cy Young season (via Brooks Baseball). He's not going to come cheaply, and though the Astros made plenty of cash during their October run in 2017, they have other impending contract they'll have to deal with the next couple of years (Jose Altuve, Marwin Gonzalez, etc.).

MLB trade rumors: Cubs enter Gerrit Cole sweepstakes

  MLB trade rumors: Cubs enter Gerrit Cole sweepstakes The Cubs do not have the prospects the Pirates have been asking for, but they have something else with a lot of value.According to FanRag Sports, the Cubs have talked with the Pirates about acquiring the 27-year-old starting pitcher.

MLB Daily Dish MLB Trade Rumors and Signings. Log In or Sign Up. As David O’Brien of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports, the Braves are interested in trading for a frontline starter , with their top two targets being Rays right-hander Chris Archer and White Sox lefty Jose Quintana.

Gerrit Cole, Chris Archer and other starting pitchers Yankees should target. MLB Trade Rumors "The Padres have avoided arbitration with righty Carter Capps, according to Jon Heyman of Fan Rag Marshawn Lynch Spent His 1-Game Suspension Going Full Beast Mode At His Former High School.

Yu Darvish, free agent

Thoughts: Like Arrieta, Darvish will be expensive (more than $100 million, maybe much more). Of course, signing a free agent means the club won't have to dip into its crop of prospects to acquire him, and for a team built on prospects succeeding in the majors, that has an appeal. The Astros know Darvish, who long pitched for the AL West rival Rangers, as well as any team. And, yes, they torched him a couple of times in the World Series after Darvish, 31, was dealt to the Dodgers. But if the report about the right-hander tipping pitches is true, that's easily fixed. Darvish's raw stuff is elite, and intoxicating.

MORE: Ranking the top 101 MLB free agents for 2018

Gerrit Cole, Pirates

a group of baseball players standing on top of a field: Gerrit Cole, Chris Archer, Yu Darvish © (Getty Images) Gerrit Cole, Chris Archer, Yu Darvish

Thoughts: There was a report Monday linking the Astros to the Pirates' ace. It's no secret that the Pirates are open to dealing Cole (wrote more on him Monday), who finished fourth the NL Cy Young race the year Arrieta won. He's been strongly connected to the Yankees as well. Cole is arbitration-eligible this offseason and next offseason, then is eligible to become a free agent after the 2019 season. So that means he doesn't provide the ideal type of long-term security the Astros would want, but having him in the rotation during his 2019 walk year would certainly help ease the potential loss of Keuchel and/or Morton after 2018.

MLB trade rumors: Astros now in on Gerrit Cole as Yankees still in pursuit

  MLB trade rumors: Astros now in on Gerrit Cole as Yankees still in pursuit Some scouts have said it's a matter of "when" not "if" the Yankees will acquire Gerrit Cole, but the Astros are not giving up.According to Yahoo Sports, the Astros have engaged in talks with the Pirates to acquire Cole, and while many scouts told the NY Daily News they believe the Yankees will be the team to get him, they openly admit the Astros have the assets to get a deal done too.

Astros owner Jim Crane told reporters, including Alyson Footer of MLB .com, on Monday that the team is “actively pursuing a high - end starter ” and are willing to utilize either the trade or free-agent market in order to acquire one, so Cole could certainly be a fit.

MLB Trade Rumors : Chris Archer to the Chicago Cubs? Houston Astros Yuli Gurriel Could Face Discipline for Gesture7h ago. MLB : World Series, recent hires demonstrate rise of younger managers8h ago.

Chris Archer, Rays

Thoughts: All things considered, Archer is the perfect fit. He's locked into an incredibly team-friendly contract — the club options run through 2021 — and he's an incredibly gifted pitcher, not to mention one of baseball's true good guys. The Rays aren't actively looking to trade him, of course, which means the price in prospects will be incredibly steep. We're talking "offer you can't refuse" level. But the Astros have a very good farm system, the type of system with both the upper-level talent and depth necessary to make a deal like this happen. And Archer, just 29, is about as sure of a bet as any pitcher potentially available in a trade (though, obviously, all pitchers carry an inherent injury risk). If any pitcher is worth trading the farm for, it's Archer, who has a career 3.63 ERA/3.46 FIP and struck out a career high 11.1 batters per nine innings in 2017.

If you're an Astros fan, this is the move you should be rooting for.

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Alex Cobb/Lance Lynn, free agents

Thoughts: These guys represent the second tier of free-agent starting pitchers, which is pushing the boundaries of Crane's "high-end" comment. They aren't as good as peak Arrieta/Darvish, but they also won't be nearly as expensive. Both could be had for a four-year deal worth well short of $100 million, and that's appealing. Both have dealt with Tommy John surgery and recovery, and both came back to pitch solid seasons in 2017 that should alleviate concerns related to the procedure. For most contenders, these guys would slot in as a No. 3 starter in 2018; for the Astros, they'd be No. 4/5 guys, which tells you how good that rotation really is. More importantly, they'd provide rotation certainty for the next couple of years.

Adding Andrew McCutchen, Evan Longoria should help Giants erase remnants of '17 debacle .
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