Astros trade Roy Oswalt to Phillies for J.A. Happ, two prospects

July 18, 2010 - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States of America - 18 July 2010: Houston Astros starting pitcher Roy Oswalt (44) delivers a pitch to the plate during the National League game between the Houston Astros and the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Pirates Paul Maholm.

According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, the Astros have traded starter Roy Oswalt to the Phillies for J.A. Happ, and prospects Anthony Gose and Jonathan Villar. Oswalt had to waive his no-trade clause in order for the deal to go through, which he obviously did. (Or else, you know, there wouldn’t be a story.)

Here are some details for the y.o.u.:

The Astros also agreed to pay $11 million of the more than $23 remaining on Oswalt’s contract, which runs through 2011, so the Phillies will owe him about $12 million for a season plus two months. They also can exercise their end of a mutual option in an effort to keep Oswalt for 2012.

Some teams were reluctant to pursue Oswalt, who turns 33 on Aug. 29, in this trade market due to injury concerns. He has been on the disabled list three times since ‘06 with back or hip issues, including each of the past two seasons.

As Rosenthal points out, exactly one year ago, the Phillies traded for Cliff Lee and they went on to appear in their second World Series in two years. Will they strike magic two years in a row? Tough to say. They were six games above the Marlins in the NL East at this date last year and now they’re chasing the Braves by three.

That said, a three-game deficit is nothing with a starting rotation that features Oswalt, Roy Halladay and Cole Hamels. The key is whether or not the offense will come around, which it looks like it may.

Oswalt is having his worst career as a pro record-wise at 6-12, but he’s pitched better than the numbers suggest. He should be re-energized by re-joining the pennant race and should be a welcome addition to the Phillies’ rotation. It’s time for him to step up now, though.

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Phillies have deal in place for Roy Oswalt

08 Mar 2002 : Roy Oswalt of the Houston Astros during the Spring Training Game against the Kansas City Royals in Haines City, Florida. The Astros won 11-0. DIGITAL IMAGE. Mandatory Credit: Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Did you think the Phillies were just going to lie back and let the Braves take the NL East from them? You did? Well then you, my friend, were wrong. Dead wrong.

According to FOX 26 in Houston, the Phillies have a deal in place for Astros’ starter Roy Oswalt and are waiting for the pitcher to sign off on it. He needs to waive his no-trade clause before any deal goes through, but unless he really, really likes the Beer Can House (it’s made of cans! Cans, I tell ya!), then there’s little doubt that Oswalt is on his way out of Houston.

Apparently the two sides have agreed on the amount of money that the Astros will take back in the deal and the two teams have agreed on the players that the Phillies will have to give up. Who those players are nobody knows, but J.A. Happ is probably one of them.

Speaking of Happ, it was rumored yesterday that he may have been involved in a deal that would have sent him to the Cubs in exchange for Ted Lilly. But obviously if the Phillies acquire Oswalt, Lilly would be dropped from Philly’s plans like a (insert clichéd line here).

More on this story as it develops.

MLB Roundup: Red-hot Renteria, Lee’s bad news & the BoSox’s early woes

Giants 5, Braves 4
Quick, name the team with the best record in baseball. The Yankees? Sorry – they’re currently only .500. The answer would be the Giants, who have begun the year 4-0 after coming from behind to the beat the Braves 5-4 in 13 innings on Friday. Quick, name the hottest hitter in the league right now. If you said Albert Pujols, then punch yourself in the ear because you’re wrong. If you said Edgar Renteria, you’re right, but you probably only said that to be a wiseass – so the jokes on you. Renteria is batting an astonishing .688 to start the year after going 3-for-5 with a game-tying two-run home run in the bottom of the ninth, which helped San Fran erase a 4-2 deficit. I don’t know how Pablo Sandoval slimmed down and stole Renteria’s jersey without anyone seeing, but there’s no way that’s the real Edgar Renteria.

Rangers 6, Mariners 2
Nelson Cruz abused the Mariners on Friday, going 3-for-4 with a solo homer, two RBI and two runs scored in the Rangers’ 6-2 victory. Seattle is hitting .199 as a team and was 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position. It was the club’s fourth straight loss and making matters worse, it was revealed that Cliff Lee might not come off the disabled list until May now.

Royals 4, Red Sox 3
It’s early, but you know things are bad in Boston when they’re losing to Kansas City. Rick Ankiel (yes, that Rick Ankiel) hit a go-ahead two-run single off Daniel Bard in the eighth inning of the Royals’ 4-3 win over the BoSox on Friday night. It was the fourth hit of the night for Ankiel, who also hit a solo home run and drove in three runs. Not a bad night for the newcomer, who helped sent Boston spiraling to a 1-3 start.

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2010 MLB Preview: NL East

In order to help get you ready for the MLB season, we’re doing division-by-division rankings with quick overviews on how each club could fair in 2010. Next to each team, you’ll also find a corresponding number written in parenthesis, which indicates where we believe that club falls in a league-wide power ranking. Be sure to check back throughout the next two weeks leading up to the season, as we will be updating our content daily. Enjoy.

All 2010 MLB Preview Content | AL East Preview | AL Central Preview | AL West Preview | NL East | NL Central | NL West

Next up is the NL East.

1. Philadelphia Phillies (2)
Much like the Yankees in the American League, it’s hard to find bad things to say about the Phillies. They’re the three-time defending NL East champions and considering they’re ready to bring back the same core of players that got them to the World Series the past two years, there’s no reason to doubt them. Oh, and they added Roy Halladay. Roy, I’m going to dominate your face for nine innings, Halladay. If Cole Hamels rebounds and J.A. Happ’s 2009 wasn’t a fluke, the Phillies won’t suffer a setback this season. In fact, the pitching doesn’t even have to be that great with the likes of Jimmy Rollins, Placido Polanco, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Jayson Werth and Raul Ibanez taking up the first six spots in the order. The problem, however, is that Hamels might not bounce back and Happ’s ’09 season may have been a fluke. There’s also that nagging Brad Lidge closer issue that could haunt this club as well. That said, odds are that the Fighting Phils will be right back at the top of the NL East again this season. They’re too good, too talented and too experienced to fold and they have a great chance to reclaim their title back from the Yankees.

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A’s Bailey, Marlins’ Coghlan voted Rookies of the Year

A’s closer Andrew Bailey won the American League Rookie of the Year award on Monday, while Marlins’ outfielder Chris Coghlan won the same honors for the National League.


Coghlan’s victory continues the Marlins’ streak of three: three winners in club history, with each coming in three-year spans.
It started with Dontrelle Willis winning the Rookie of the Year Award in 2003, continued with Hanley Ramirez – now among the best shortstops in the Major Leagues – claiming the honor in ’06, and now the torch has been passed to Coghlan.

A Palm Harbor, Fla., native, Coghlan beat out loads of promising first-year players in a rookie slate that really had no single favorite this year. On the list of contenders were Braves right-hander Tommy Hanson (11-4 with a 2.89 ERA in 21 starts), Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen (.286 batting average, 54 RBIs and 22 stolen bases), Phillies lefty J.A. Happ (12-4, 2.93 ERA in 35 games), Brewers infielder Casey McGehee (.301 batting average, 16 homers and 66 RBIs) and Cardinals outfielder Colby Rasmus (.251 batting average, 16 homers and 52 RBIs).

Coghlan certainly deserved the award, but I’m a little surprised that Happ or even McCutchen didn’t win the award. Happ came close (he received 94 points compared to Coghlan’s 105), but McCutchen finished behind Hanson.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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