Astros owner Drayton McLane says his team would consider absorbing part of a contract in a trade if it meant getting better prospects, writes Zachary Levine of the Houston Chronicle. McLane admitted that the team will be "willing to look at anything" as the trade deadline approaches, but said that "nothing is imminent right now."
"It's totally and completely dependent on the offers you're getting in return," McLane said of the salary issue. "We'd have to evaluate that at the time."
McLane's willingness to absorb salary could be crucial to the Astros' chances of moving Roy Oswalt or Lance Berkman. A report earlier this month suggested the Astros were attempting to convince potential Oswalt suitors to assume the pitcher's entire remaining salary, which no club seemed eager to do. If the Astros were to pay a portion of the money owed to Oswalt, a trade would seem much more likely.
Oswalt is guaranteed $15MM in 2010 and $16MM in 2011, along with a $2MM buyout for his $16MM 2012 club option. Berkman, meanwhile, will earn $14.5MM this season and has a $15MM club option ($2MM buyout) for next year.