Astros Trade Review: Veras to Tigers for Two Prospects
With a couple weeks remaining until the trade deadline, we continue our Astros Trade Review series. This time around we are looking at a trade made July 29, 2013, when the rebuilding Astros shipped Jose Veras to the Detroit Tigers for two prospects.
The full trade was as follows:
Detroit Tigers Received: RHP Jose Veras
Tigers Side of Things
Jose Veras (at time of trade for Astros): 19 Saves, 2.93 ERA, 44 k’s vs. 14 BB, 1.00 WHIP
When your team is out of any playoff races and in rebuilding mode, there is really never a need for a successful closer. Jeff Luhnow acknowledged that idea when he traded Jose Veras to the Tigers in 2013. He took advantage of Veras’ solid start to the season and turned it into two quality prospects. Veras went on to pitch pretty well for the Tigers, with a 3.20 ERA in mostly a setup role (although he did have a couple saves) for the rest of that season. A free agent at the end of the season, he went on to sign with the Chicago Cubs. After struggling mightily with the Cubs, he was released and actually resigned with the Astros on a minor league deal, where he went on to pitch to a 3.03 ERA for the rest of the 2014 season.
Astros Side of Things
Danry Vasquez (2016 w/ Corpus Christi): .253 AVG, .310 OBP, 1 HR, 14 RBI, 8 SB
Danry Vasquez was thought of very highly at the time of this trade with Detroit. While he has since fallen out of the Astros top 30 prospects (according to MLB.com), he is still a legitimate prospect in the organization. Currently at AA Corpus Christi, Vasquez is still showing a consistent approach at the plate where he makes decent contact and can still get on base; however, he has not developed a lot of power in his game having never hit more than 9 homeruns in a season. With other outfield prospects like Derek Fisher and Kyle Tucker waiting in the wings, it may be tough for him to the big leagues, but at only 22, there may still be some upside to him.
David Paulino (2016 w/ Corpus Christi): 4-2 Record, 1.86 ERA, 66 K’s vs. 11 BB, 0.93 WHIP
David Paulino is, without a doubt, the gem of this trade for the Astros. Like other trades, Luhnow and company showed their skills at being able to scout the lower minor leagues to find quality arms. In fact, the three top Astros pitching prospects (Martes, Paulino, and Musgrove) have all come over via trade. Paulino missed all of 2014 recovering from Tommy John surgery, but has really excelled in the Astros organization since then. He features a fastball that sits in the mid 90’s and also features a powerful curveball and a developing changeup. At only 22, he could be knocking on the door for the Astros at some point in the next couple years.
Overall Grade for the Trade: A
As I write these articles I feel like a broken record but, once again, Luhnow has shown skill in his ability to bring in young, talented prospects when giving up major league players. Jose Veras was really lightning in a bottle for the Astros. He was a cheap reliever that had some success and was flipped by Luhnow for future assets. Those future assets, primarily Paulino, are paying huge dividends for our organization now. While these were very painful years for Astros fans, these types of trades are the reason that we are not only successful at the major league level, but also have a very solid farm system as well.
Previous Trade Review Articles:
**Photo Credit: Tammy Tucker**