Brian McTaggert from MLB.com is reporting that the Astros have dealt both Jason Bourgeois and Humberto Quintero. At this time, it is unclear as to who the two have been traded to, but McTaggert and Houston Chronicle beatwriter Zachary Levine have reported that both were scratched from action today and were seen saying their last goodbyes with their teammates following today’s game with the Cardinals.
The Astros closed the clubhouse and have not released any details as of yet. MLBtraderumors had reported that the Royals were desperate for catching depth in the wake of Salvador Perez’s knee injury. Brayan Pena was the only healthy catcher in camp with big league experience. The Fielding Bible rated Quintero as the fourth best defensive catcher in baseball over the past three seasons. The veteran has never been much of a hitter, but he has shown the ability to play between 50 and 100 games in the past. Quintero will be a nice addition for them while they wait for Perez to be healthy.
As for Bourgeois, it is a bit of a surprise to see him going to the Royals given the fact that the Nationals were hot on his trail. However, such a deal may be an indication that the Royals are either not thrilled with Lorenzo Cain’s performance or they are worried about their backup outfielders. Bourgeois has shown an ability to field all three outfield positions capably. He also has been very proficient against left-handed pitcher.
According to SportsRadio 610, the Astros will add minor league pitcher Kevin Chapman and a player to be named later. Chapman just turned 23 and reached AA last season after being drafted in the fourth round in 2010. The lefty has finished with a strikeout rate of 13.1 K/9 in 2011 between high A and AA. Overall, his walk rate has been high (4.1) and his BABIPs have been off the charts. Couple that with an abnormally low left on base percentage and you can see the Astros interest. His high ERAs are likely due more to bad luck than anything. He finished with FIPs of 1.14, and 4.06 in 2011. That looks a whole lot better than the raw numbers (4.84 and 4.99).
Naturally, any deal involving a player to be named later is hard to grade, but so far it looks like a positive deal for both teams. The Astros had logjams at catcher and in the outfield, so getting a quality prospect for two extraneous players is a good deal. The Royals had a huge hole behind the dish and got an upgrade to their outfield bench. If the Astros get another quality prospect in the deal it could be very good for them as they continue to build for the future.