Sunday, July 30, 2006

More rumor-endo

Since this blog so rarely traffics in rumor and innuendo, it's time for me to catch up with some of the latest scuttlebutt associated with our National League affiliate.

ESPN's Steve Phillips said tonight that the Rangers have offered Hank Blalock to the Astros for Brad Lidge.

They ought to take that deal. But the two teams might be discussing various trades; Baseball Prospectus' Will Carroll says the Rangers have offered Brad Wilkerson and Rod Barajas for Lidge, Morgan Ensberg and Fernando Nieve, something that seems too lopsided for Texas. If the Astros took Blalock for Lidge, they could then send Ensberg to San Diego for Scott Linebrink, with either Linebrink or Chad Qualls or Dan Wheeler closing.

The Orioles and Astros have also discussed a Miguel Tejada deal that includes Roy Oswalt, according to both BP and the Baltimore Sun. Morgan Ensberg and Adam Everett would complete the package and go to Baltimore.

I don't see how this makes the Astros better. Tejada is a huge offensive upgrade, but that doesn't make up for the loss of Roy O and the defensive downgrade. The Orioles may not be especially interested anyway, since they'd likely only have Oswalt through 2007. And Oswalt appears to have been taken off the table for now.

Next year the 'Stros gain many millions of dollars in the expiring contracts of Jeff Bagwell, Roger Clemens, and Andy Pettitte, money which they could use in pursuing free agents for 2007. I'd rather see them reload for next season rather than try to punch through something costly in order to try to capitalize on Clemens' final season (and possibly Pettitte's as well). That urgency alone suggests Tim Purpura may do something rash.

I hope he doesn't, but we'll know for sure by tomorrow's trading deadline.

No comments: