Oakland additionally outrighted right-hander Bobby Wahl off of its 40-man roster. That move will create space for Laureano to be added to the A’s roster to protect him from the Rule 5 draft — the same consideration that no doubt created the circumstances of this swap.
Laureano, 23, ranked 11th on MLB.com’s most recent prospect list for the ’Stros. But he failed to follow up on a breakout 2016 season. Over 513 plate appearances at Double-A in 2017, he slashed just .227/.298/.369 with 11 home runs and 24 stolen bases.
The 23-year-old Bailey is still a ways off from needing his own 40-man spot. He split the 2017 season between the Class A and High-A levels, pitching to a cumulative 3.26 ERA over 91 frames. Though he allowed a few more runners to cross the plate after his promotion, Bailey did impress with 12.4 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9 in his 34 innings at the higher tier.
Meanwhile, the 25-year-old Wahl made it to the majors for the first time in 2017, allowing four earned runs in 7 2/3 frames. Much of his prior time has been spent at the Double-A level, where he owns a 3.08 ERA with 10.4 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 in 73 total frames.