Astros Unlikely To Be Major Players In Free Agency

The Astros went into full blown rebuilding mode by trading Lance Berkman, Roy Oswalt, Hunter Pence, and Michael Bourn over the last 15 months, and the team is now focused on youth and building from within. As part of that process, GM Ed Wade told MLB.com's Brian McTaggart that Houston is unlikely to be a major player in free agency this offseason

"We'll do all the legwork we normally do and be prepared to read and react as opportunities present themselves, but I don't see us being major players in the free-agent market," said Wade. "I think the course we set out on actually a year ago with the Oswalt and Berkman trades, it's a course we have to continue to follow.

"We'll try to infuse as many young players into our situation as we possibly can and that being the case, we're committed to trying to stay young and build that core nucleus from within. I just don't see a scenario where we're major players in the market, but there could be opportunities to present themselves along the way that we have to be prepared for."

Wade also reiterated that he would like to re-sign Clint Barmes, but the team's "economic environment" probably will not allow them to do so. There is only one-year and $18.5MM left on Carlos Lee's contract, though the team still owes Wandy Rodriguez and Brett Myers a combined $39.5MM over the next two seasons. Jim Crane is awaiting approval from the other owners before he can finalize his purchase of the team from Drayton McLane, and he'll likely be faced with the opportunity of moving the team to the American League.

In our Offseason Outlook, Tim Dierkes mentioned that the Astros could import some relievers on one-year contracts with an eye towards flipping them at the trade deadline or recouping compensatory draft picks next winter. Houston will pick first overall in the 2012 draft after finishing with the worst record in the game this season.


30 Responses to Astros Unlikely To Be Major Players In Free Agency Leave a Reply

  1. rainyperez 4 years ago

    I like donuts because they are good.

  2. jwsox 4 years ago

    I’m sorry I still don’t get this. They traded two young affordable guys in pence and Bourne. Yet kept Meyers, lee and wandy? At the very least wandy and Meyers could have been moved.

    • Bleed_Orange 4 years ago

      because Lee is not good and expensive

    • Phillies_Aces35 4 years ago

      Because Lee, Myers, and Rodriguez wouldn’t have gotten them anything back prospect wise and the Phillies didn’t want either of those guys.

      The Rockies claimed Wandy but for some reason the Astros didn’t want to dump his contract.

      • letsgogiants 4 years ago

        It wasn’t that the Astros didn’t want to get rid of him, but that they put a huge price tag on Rodriguez, something the Rockies balked at. If the Rockies were in contention at the time of the claim, the Rockies might have had a better chance at actually getting him. 

      • letsgogiants 4 years ago

        It wasn’t that the Astros didn’t want to get rid of him, but that they put a huge price tag on Rodriguez, something the Rockies balked at. If the Rockies were in contention at the time of the claim, the Rockies might have had a better chance at actually getting him.

  3. LUWahooNatFan 4 years ago

    This is news?

    • barroomhero 4 years ago

      Yeah, I saw this and was thinking: “And in other obvious news, the sky is blue.”

  4. FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago

    I hope they make Norris available

  5. ABTY7 4 years ago

    How sad… Understand the complex ownership issue, but Houston is the 4th largest market in the country- rebuild, sure- but to have Clint f’ing Barmes be iffy due to finanical restrants is rediculous…

  6. sourbob 4 years ago

    Picking up relievers who might bounce back with an eye toward flipping them at deadline? That’s a good idea. Matter of fact, that’s exactly how rebuilding teams should use their slack payroll on free agents. If you end up with $8-12MM to spend, spend it on one year deals for bounceback candidates. The Pirates did all right with this system. 

  7. bigpat 4 years ago

    They should have traded Wandy or Myers and extended Bourn instead of trading him for a stale bag of cheese curls. 

    • johnsilver 4 years ago

      They should unload Ed Wade along with the high salary guys as well. He has lost it since leaving Philly. Signing Billy Hall was just an exclamation point to all the boner deals, FA, plus ridiculous extensions he has given his own players since he went to Houston.

      Guess baseball needs at least 1 resident loon and with Minaya, Hendry gone only him (Wade) and Sabean are left. The asylum is losing it’s residents.

  8. Ethanator99 4 years ago

    I don’t even know if this is worth a post. It’s like creating a thread that says. “Yankees have a lot of money” or “baseball is fun to watch”

    • aa 4 years ago

      If it includes Pirates/Astros games it’s debatable…

      • Matthew Dolter 4 years ago

        cutch is one of the most electric players in baseball so sorry you miss it phanboy

        • aa 4 years ago

          Great, so the game has one good player in it. 

          • fxx3605 4 years ago

            carlos lee running at speed is laughable

  9. Phillies_Aces35 4 years ago

    I think the package they got for Pence was great and might end up being Wade’s best return from the three deals he did with the Phillies.

    The Bourn deal was atrocious though. They may end up becoming solid major league guys but to not get at least one stud for him is laughable, but it’s Ed Wade so that’s to be expected.

    The one deal that’s going to haunt him for years is the Anthony Gose for Brett Wallace deal, IMO. Gose is going to be a star in this league.

    • Biggio3000 4 years ago

      I agree, we got a great return for Pence but Bourn on the other hand was horrible. We should have gotten Minor in that deal.

    • BruhoftheYear2k13 4 years ago

      i think people sometimes overvalue bourn. he’s a great, useful player who i wish we could have kept because he makes the team better, but at the end of the day i think people expected too much of a return for him. i mean yeah there’s the amazing center field gold glove defense and base stealing abilities, and he gets on base reasonably and hits for average, and there aren’t really any better options at leadoff in the game, but did the braves make the playoffs? i’m not blaming their slide on bourn, because he did more than his part after the trade, but is he the great player that propels them to the world series? no, he’s not a superstar or a game-changer. would ed wade like to have gotten minor or vizcaino or delgado? absolutely. were the braves about to let that happen? obviously not. wade made the trade he could, and it was safe. i wish he could have gotten a stud, but i don’t think it would have happened, not for just bourn. i’m okay with the bourn trade, don’t love it, don’t hate it. not atrocious. we got a little bit of pitching depth we desperately needed.

      and as far as the gose for wallace, i’m not sure if it’ll haunt us. i mean gose might very well end being a much better player than wallace, gose is essentially another michael bourn. but the few prospects the astros do have, are outfielders. it won’t haunt us if austin wates or george springer have anything to say about it. 

      • Backup_Slider 4 years ago

        Gose will be a very different player from Bourn. Gose figures to hit for lower average, slug 15 to 25 homers, steal 30 to 40 bases, won’t have anywhere near Bourn’s range, and probably will wind up as a rightfielder given his cannon-like arm. Ed Wade did poorly on the Bourn trade and would have been better off dealing him in the postseason if that was the best offer that he could find. Conversely, Wade did phenomenally well in the Pence deal, particularly given the eventual inclusion of Domingo Santana.

  10. baybombers 4 years ago

    theres no lockout right?

    • no there won’t be a lockout in baseball thank god, Football and Basketball lockouts were embarrassing. The owners and players association in baseball actually get along for the most part and agree on most things. There are a few kinks, like international drafting and for set slotting on players in drafts and even possibly a draft budget depending on how many picks a team had, position in the draft like the NFL does. But nothing major

      • baybombers 4 years ago

        Cool thanks for the update man, i couldnt find any straight news on it for some reason. Thats great to hear, i was sweating it out after the way the NFL lockout went. Hopefully they get those issues fixed soon so they keep getting along hahaha

  11. wickedkevin 4 years ago

    Astros unlinkely to be major league team

  12. Well, I mean, this is almost news… I feel more knowledgeable now than I did 5 minutes ago…

  13. Matt Talbert 4 years ago

    Well – Brett Wallace was a high rated prospect and I too was high on him.  Wade got a great return for Pence, but Bourn was stolen by my Braves.  I think you received one decent prospect out of those Ascensio I think his name is.  He’s going to be a good reliever maybe even your closer for years to come.
    Here is the future for the Astros:

    C  – Chris Wallace ( —> Mike Napoli)
    1b – Chris Singleton ( —> compares to Ryan Howard)
    LF – JD Martinez (good young player) — compares to ?
    SS – Jonathan Villar or Jiovanni Mier
    2b – Jose Altuve (good young player) —> Compares to Danny Espinosa.
    RF – Domingo Santana ( —> Carlos Gonzalez)
    CF – Ariel Ovando ( —> Darryl Strawberry)
    Extra OF — George Springer,
    3b – Michael Kvasnickla (good young hitter —> Michael Young)
    SP – Bud Norris, Jarrod Cosart, Jordan Lyles, Mike Foltyniewicz, Bushueseveral marginal armsRP – Dallas Keuchel, Mark Melancon

    • Biggio3000 4 years ago

      Hopefully the prospects will all work out but yeah we got hosed in the Bourn trade, we should have at least gotten Minor

  14. stroh 4 years ago

    Unlike many folks, I think Ed Wade is getting this team back on the right track.   The talent that has been drafted the last 3 years and the trades have added several very good young players to the talent pool, and we already saw last year some of those guys come up……Altuve, Martinez, Paredes, Lyles, Sosa.   I am going to be patient, and yes it will take a few years, but this is the right way to do it instead of throwing a lot of money at players who in 70% of the cases don’t perform up to their contracts.   This is the way the team was built in the Biggio, Bagwell, Oswalt, Berkman era and that is the only way to do it to remain consistently competitive.

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