Speaking with Brian McTaggart of MLB.com and other reporters Tuesday, Astros president of baseball operations Jeff Luhnow painted a somewhat bleak picture in regards to the team’s payroll. In Luhnow’s estimation, the Astros are going to have to clear out money if they want to acquire a top-end starting pitcher this offseason. With that in mind, it looks more likely than ever that they’ll be saying goodbye to the No. 1 player on the market, right-hander Gerrit Cole, who teamed with Justin Verlander and Zack Greinke to comprise an incredibly formidable trio in 2019.
Back in early October, before the Astros began what proved to be an American League-winning run through the playoffs, owner Jim Crane indicated he’d like to avoid going past the $208MM luxury tax in 2020. However, in the estimation of Jason Martinez of FanGraphs and Roster Resource, their luxury-tax payroll for next season is already over $231MM. As a result, the Astros could be more likely to shave payroll than make any major additions this winter.
The Astros would cut some money by trading star shortstop Carlos Correa, who’s due to earn an estimated $7.4MM via arbitration next year. Dealing the 25-year-old sounds like crazy talk, especially when you’re a championship-level team like Houston, but it’s not off the table. The club has “entertained” the possibility, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports (subscription link). As of now, though, no deal appears imminent.
With the top free-agent shortstop, Didi Gregorius, now off the board, it stands to reason any shortstop-needy club would (or has) called the Astros in regards to Correa. In trading Correa, though, the Astros would be selling low after an injury-limited year and leaving themselves with questions at short (of course, they did do just fine without him for a large portion of 2019). For now, Correa’s one of several key Astros who’s due to reach free agency over the next couple years, which could hasten either a trade or an extension. Correa, Verlander and Greinke are under control through 2021, while first baseman Yuli Gurriel and outfielders George Springer and Michael Brantley are slated to hit the open market after next season.
stan lee the manly
Trade him before the regression hits!
I think the entire team will regress when the mlb bans the Astros season MVP from their stadium, the trash can…
Rumor has it partner mlb sanctions require remodeling the ballpark to feature only rubber maid trash cans
Trading or signing any players from a team under commissioner investigation should be on an obvious hold. Too bad this site and about one or two hundred thousand people don’t know better.
Might be time to take a class, Cashman included.
That didn’t stop the Astros from trading away Jake Marisnick back on December 5.
Rallyshirt, exactly what I’ve been saying since the cheating was exposed. Correa was using the sign feedback when he was batting, so he was knowingly benefiting from it. Who’s to say players won’t be sanctioned? They should be suspended for some number of games, if not most or all of next season. And why would a free agent – who has control over where he ends up – even consider the Astros, especially before MLB reaches its conclusions and metes out punishments? If I were a player, there is no way I would sign with the Astros, and if I were any other team, there is no way I’d sign an Astros player who was on the roster at least in 2017.
You know what this is called? Intimidation.
Carlos Correa won ROY in 2015, he’s not some average Joe from a cubicle who got made into a superstar like he was put in the Captain America chamber.
Intimidation, who are you commenting to, and what does your comment even mean? Are you high? Regardless, he cheated. I don’t care if he was MVP four years running. Eighty game suspension sounds about right.
You know what this is called? Intimidation.
They were better on the road in 2017, which is the season that is under scrutiny, and also the last one this would be possible because of the delays used on TVs after that season… because of teams other than the Astros.
Intimidation, okay, this clinches it, you’re high or drunk. TV delays have zero to do with this – Astros used closed circuit monitor. Okay, I’m done with you.
He’s 25, he’s got a little time
That’s old for a trash can
A trash can that’s 25? What’s that in human years?
stan lee the manly
I’m not talking age, I’m talking that good old fashioned voodoo trash can magic regression.
Make sure he comes with a loud garbage can.
Big rumor just dropped that the ink is drying on a Luis Castillo + goods for Correa trade. bark bark
Lol Astros would jump on this
That would be a horrible deal for the reds. Deal your best and cheapest pitcher for an always about to be injured SS? Also rumors without posting links strips away your credibility.
Leroy the dog on Twitter woof woof
Behind who? Sonny?
I considered offering suarez for correra in my fantasy league then I looked past correras name. Guy has massive talent but is brittle. One has to figure you’ll get 100-120 games out of him once that is factored in you need to half his value. Needs to prove he can stay on field before he can pull Castillo plus returns
So much potential but he just can’t seem to stay on the field!
Especially at a position that requires just the opposite.
How good will he be without the CF camera, though?
I wonder how this entire scandal is going to affect these guys? I mean of course I know that these are really good players who would’ve been good without cheating, but everyone on that roster is going scrutinized. Every time someone slumps, people will say they are nothing without cheating.
Check those away game stats. No one with a brain is saying they’re nothing.
MLB’s investigation is for the 2017 season only. Houston’s offense was better away than home in 2017. Even if MLB investigates 2018, Houston was also better away than home in 2018. In 2019 that changed and they were better at home..
What makes you think they didn’t do it on the road? You can steal signs from any hi def feed.
You actually cant. There is a very real delay between the feed and live that the time doesnt work to accomplish it without a closed circuit in stadium feed. The broadcast networks have to delay it a little in order to do the live edit, and it then has to go out through the satellite and relays back to the subscribers TV. You could maybe get a close to live feed from the away broadcast truck before it sends, but it would require you to involve unknown people who arent employees of the team in the scheme..
MLB expanded the investigation to all 3 of those seasons.
stan lee the manly
There are a lot of ways to steal signs. They pay a lot of smart people a lot of money in their front office and analytics department, I guarantee some of them could come up with a way of asked.
I think I read somewhere a quote from Manfred that said they already were expanding the investigation past 2017.
True but the only ‘illegal’ method is the secret live feed in MMP. Everything else is fair game under the rules.
You know what this is called? Intimidation.
Isn’t this applicable to every other team then? And isn’t this also what the Sox and Yanks got slapped on the wrist for? The mental gymnastics are strong. Soon they’ll get accused of cereal box periscopes.
I don’t mean to beat the dead garbage can, but I wonder if this will end up being the biggest Astros news this offseason. Sure has been boring so far.
Are any of the gargage cans where you are actually alive?
That’s sorta the lead here…
I mean, maybe some girls at the jersey shore?
Wait, that’s more of a dumpster than a garbage can…
You guys want Brandon Crawford?
Nobody does. If the Giants want to try and compete in 2021 they will need to cut bait on that contract after 2020, if not before. Probably wouldn’t be the worst idea to just make Solano or Dubon the starter next year.
Crawford sucks. And this is coming from a Giants fan.
Yeah, he’s still a good defender, but his bat has a lot of holes in it.
Correa for Syndergard? who says no?
You mean the stros.
Mets just lost Wheeler and Astros are losing Cole. Astros would be dumb not to make that trade. Mets need pitching with that brutal bullpen too. Pitching is at a premium this offseason – position players are not – especially oft injured position players that may have benefited from sign stealing.
100% the Mets say no.
Mets. Correa injured too often.
And Noah isn’t?
Noah threw 197 innings this past season — his most ever.. Correa has missed significant playing time each of the past three years.
How unfeasible would a Correa for Bryant grade be? Probably a few pieces on either side to make it work? Again, honest question for you internet GMs that are better at that game than me? Is Houston doing it to trim payroll? How many years does Correa have left? And yes, I know I could look but I’m lazy lol
for Bryant and contreras, YES!
They wouldn’t be cutting the necessary payroll with that move…
Theo would laugh you out of the room with that
Ok Guys… Just dreaming big… Correa will likely file the same grievance as Bryant… Let’s see the ruling before we throw the baby out with the bathwater…
I’m pretty confident there’s not a GM in baseball who would take Correa for Bryant in a one on one trade, let alone with more talent thrown in.
In which way?
Pretty unfeasible. First there’s the Bryant grievance which can hugely affect his value, second the Cubs don’t need a short stop and third the Astros don’t need a third Baseman.
They both have two years of control left (assuming the grievance doesn’t affect Bryant’s control) but the trade would make both teams worse unless there’s a secondary move, but that would mean either moving the received player immediately or moving Bregman/Baez which I don’t see happening.
Play Báez at second? Plus, Corrres is making less money by a lot according to the article. But I’ll concede it doesn’t make sense. Thought he had an extra year on Bryant. And thought the Astros could use Bryant at 3rd and move Bergman to SS in a pinch? Honestly think the Astros could trade him for young pitching and not worry about runs. They’re stacked in that department.
Correa is damaged goods and the Astros know it. Wouldn’t touch him with a mid level prospect in return.
Tommy Edman for Correa straight up?
thor would look better in red
Tommy Edman, Paul Dejong and Alex Reyes for Correa!!
Edman,Dejong,Reyes,Bader,J Martinez for Correa and Reddick
What a joke, Cards fan indeed
If he can play 3rd, the Braves should look into this. If he can’t, I’d include Dansby in a trade for him.
He plays 3rd at the WBC and looks so good right there!
I figure Correa for either Myers or Price
Correa for Contreras then Astros sign Rendon and move Bregman to SS.
You’re right, the Astros can surely sign Rendon a $3M contract (the difference between Ocrrea and a Contreras).
They are dealing Correa to SHED paroll. They are not going to sign Rendon…
There are no kinks or quotes to anyone referencing a Correa trade rumor at all. The quote from Luhnow was that they need to clear salary to acquire top end starting pitching. The most obvious move is shipping off Reddick and paying at least half of it just to free up payroll against the tax threshold.
Reddick trade can’t/won’t happen before the summer. Coming off a huge decline and surgery, so his value has never been lower, plus you can’t go into the season with only Tucker, Springer, Brantley, and Straw. No, I don’t count Alvarez.
I’m sure if the Astros trade Reddick and $6MM for another under performer on a bad contract or some nobody in A ball, there’s a possibility Reddick is dealt… I think Reddick should be a high priority this offseason for the Astros
Rosenthal said the Stros “entertained the possibility” but considering the double qualification, it’s certainly not imminent.
Vandals Took The Handles
When is a story not a story?
This means that management people were going through a list of what-if options during brainstorming, and they got to Correa. They very probably got to 3 other guys that would make a nice story as well.
We’re in silly season, and this is one of the worst examples that happens during this time each year.
I would guess that all MLB front offices go over all possibilities related to their personnel and how they fit with their payroll limitations. And not just players. It’s a part of what they do. Rosenthal and his ilk try to keep themselves in the news too often. Less is more. This is one of countless stories that ML ballplayers LOL at with one another in the locker room.
File this one under “duh”. Your a team that desperately needs a TOR starter under 35, and Correa’s huge potential is mired by his health issues. Not saying we must deal him, but you are absolutely listening.
Correa for Dansby Swanson and Thomas Burrows.
Gotta be the Mets
the Mets would never make a trade to improve the team
That’s true but they would trade for him , then he does good , they throw 300 mill at him , then he does nothing but choke for ten years
In a Salary dump a trade for the PTBNL from the Reds
They trade correa for pitching and more, then next offseason sign marcus semien as a free agent
Gross. A trade would move Bregman to SS, Yuli to 3b, and Alvarez/Tucker to 1b
What teams need a shortstop and have a surplus of pitching? Serious question
Lol “surplus of pitching”
wouldn’t happen. Despite his injuries, he’s still going to get paid big time by someone in just a couple years. It won’t be Tampa, so they won’t give up the goods for just those years.
Not saying it’s Tampa just saying they got some Good pitching and a league average shortstop
dynamite drop in monty
You rebel scum
cheatin stros need to be dismantled
Definitely going to happen. Remember when the Patriots got dismantled?
Patriots SHOULD have been dismantled.
Yeah, they really should’ve been, but all they got was being and fined and docked draft pick.
Yeah, they really should’ve been, but all they got was being fined and docked draft picks.
Astros could trade him for prospects and move Bregman to SS. Then they trade for Bryant to play third.
This is what I was suggesting with my proposal above.
How about Correa for Kluber? Both have 2 yrs of control remaining and the teams could split the money if need be, which means Cleveland would have to send $10M. It’s risky for both sides, but both could benefit greatly from this deal. The Astros get a #2 to slot behind JV and the Indians get a second baseman(assuming he can play the position).
Someone really thought about this deal, Cleveland wants to get rid of Kluber to save money not give it up, also they want prospects for the future, another grade A shortstop or second baseman ain’t gonna get them above the twins
They would be saving money. Kluber is owed $17.5M this season and $18M next. Sending $10M would still be a net savings of $25.5M. It would give the Astros a #2 for 2 yrs at $12.5M and $13M. Much less than signing a FA SP. The Indians are around $100M now, which is down from the $120M from last season. They’re not in a financial pinch and they are already a better team than the Twins. Had 3/5 of their rotation and Lindor not gone down with injuries they would have likely won the division again. The Indians’ rotation alone puts them ahead of the Twins. Even Vegas agrees with this. The Indians want to address needs and improve this team now and for future years. They are not looking for “prospect” returns unless those prospects are ready to contribute towards winning another division title now. Your assessment couldn’t be any further from the truth even if the trade idea isn’t a good one. Do some research before you ignorantly opine.
As a GM I’d have serious reservations about any Astro position players. Most guys would be pretty good if they knew what was coming half the time.
Your statement assumes a lot of things, most ridiculous of which is that they were able to decode every single pitcher’s signs from every single home game. It’s not a magic switch.
You do know that’s precisely the charge against them right?
Yeah, but it’s not like the catcher is holding up a sign that says fastball between his legs. That s*** takes time. Are you going to disqualify springers game leading off home runs too?
Why did the yankees use multiple signs with nobody on base for many competitive games despite the team they were playing against? Every team is actively trying to decipher the other teams signs using outside sources and every team is actively protecting against other teams deciphering their own signs.
Steven St Croix
You do know they hit better on the road than they did at home, right?
But the other teams, so far as we know, are not cheating with technology. That’s the difference.
What a bunch of crud. He can afford every free agent, any restrictions mean he wants to make 900 million this year, not 800 million.
Just a terrible human being, a MLB team owner.
Blah blah blah billionaire owner blah blah blah evil scum blah blah blah
I’m sure that’s how he became a billionaire, by not caring about things like a hundred million dollars here and there.
Texas is the perfect fit. Trade for Correa, and who doesn’t love to see an Guzman-Odor-Correa-Rendon (possibly?) infield?
Actually, I think they should put Andrus at first base.
Elvis is dead
It could happen.
Lindor and Kluber for Correa and Whitley. Then Astros sign Donaldson and move Bregman to short. Done-zo!
Indians would never take that deal.
How does that help the Stros shed payroll?
Let the fire sale begin!
Steven St Croix
The Rangers don’t have much to sell, so why start now?
Not resigning Charlie Morton last off-season was a terrible, terrible mistake on the Astros part. It forced them into gutting their farm to trade for Greinke who is a lesser pitcher than Morton and $15m dollars or so more expensive.
And now their payroll is jacked.
And they’re losing Gerit Cole.
You know what this is called? Intimidation.
Greinke had better numbers than Morton even if you only count his time spent in the AL. Morton, as the Astros predicted, slowly went downhill as the season went on. Because Greinke doesn’t have the K potential that Cole did doesn’t mean he wasn’t very good. Besides, Astros pride themselves on their ability to make prospects out of nothing. That is how they got Rojas to that level anyway.
Mets trade : Rosario,Smith,Peterson,Sanchez and low A prospect
Astros trade : Correa and 10-15th ranked prospect
What say you Astros fans
Trade Correa, Reddick, Osuna to the Brewers for Hader and then sign Cole :0
I hate to say it but I wonder what his value is. He can’t stay healthy. For a guy that young to have only one season above 130 games is conceriing.
The best fit for a trade would indeed be the Braves, in terms of both teams needs. Braves could send back Riley, Anderson, Waters, and a lower lvl arm for Correa and Reddick. Probably won’t happen, and as a Braves fan, I’d rather them not ship off two top 10 prospects for a guy they have very little chance of resigning, but in terms of fits and needs, those two line up the best. Reds and White Sox are the other two that come to mind.
It’s crazy to me all Braves fans are done with Riley? I know he struggles fornhalf a season but he was dominant for the first half. Anyone interested in Bryant and Schwarber for Riley and some of those pitching prospects? While I agree it’d make me mad the Cubs are closing their window the only way to come back is to deal guys, especially those that won’t resign, for young, controllable prospects.
Spare Tire Dixon
Schwarber and Bryant would certainly address the Atlanta offensive needs.
Houston should rename their park to Rubber Maid Park.
Frazier, Happ + 10m in 2020, and a prospect for correa?
Then trade Reddick for salary relief
Drop the prospect, make it $8MM and that probably works. If you need a prospect, a low level one.
As punishment, they should be renamed the Houston Calypsos.
Or the Houston Asterisks.
Fans should just call them the asterisks forever. A name that will live in infamy.
Correia to the Mets for Syndergard was interesting. Mets should do it, trade Cano, cash, and prospects anywhere, sign Cole, madbum, and Keuichel. McNeil plays 2nd, Correa at ss, Alonso at 1st, looking pretty good.
The Rays seem like a team that would be all over him. Pagan and Yarborough plus a couple lower guys. It might seem light but Pagan has 5 years of control and Yarborough has had some success as a sp, lrp, and has three years of control I believe maybe four. Rays might have to include a recent high pick. They could go all out get Lindor for Willy, Castillo, and last year’s 1st rounder. Indians trade Kluber and Hand save $40,000,000, trade Ramirez to St.Louis and reload for a run over the next five to seven years instead of two.
To the Braves? For next to nothing? And unicorns? Thanks!
Spare Tire Dixon
Dodgers or Braves maybe?
Of course they have! It’s logical. It’s time…..
Billionaires HATE to pay any kind of taxes, even if they are minuscule luxury taxes. It’s in their DNA…..
Besides, Correa is injury prone…..
Could see the Red’s inquire. Maybe a Tyler Mayle, Sal Romano, Anthony Desclafoni, prospect etc type of trade.
Initially I thought a trade with BOS where HOU acquires Bogaerts and Sale for Correa and Reddick could be a thought where BOS sheds salary and HOU picks up a SS with a long term contract and another Ace to replace Cole.. but it seems HOU wants to cut salary
Isn’t that why they traded for Greinke last year?
But aren’t the Asterisks trying to shed payroll? Isn’t that what this whole conversation is about?