In a move that will likely be of little consequence but showcases some of the flaws of the Astros brass, they made a trade with the Philadelphia Phillies. Let that sink in for a bit, I’m sure you’re as surprised as I am.
The player they acquired, in this story first broken by MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart, is left-hander Sergio Escalona. Escalona pitched at Reading last year, an AA level affiliate, and had a 3.81 ERA along with 10 saves. Ed Wade and company praised his ability to get out left-handed hitters as well as his strong winter ball numbers.
Which would be great, except Escalona did all that at 26. Maybe he works his way onto the MLB roster and surprises us, maybe he doesn’t, but Escalona just further satisfies Wade’s obsession with relievers and ex-Phillies.
The man they gave up, second base prospect Albert Cartwright, is far from a sure thing, of course. But he’s also just 23 and coming off a (Lancaster-aided) .932 OPS in A ball last season. The Astros have a glut of second-base prospects, but they also have a glut of ex-Phillies.
In the end, this trade probably doesn’t matter much, but it does showcase, yet again, that Ed Wade needs to deal with the Phillies and needs to deal for relievers. Every offseason.