The 2017 MLB Trade Deadline has officially passed, and the Astros have added a left-handed reliever in Francisco Liriano from the Jays, sending them OF Nori Aoki and Teoscar Hernandez. Liriano is expected to move to the bullpen, and looks to be an upgrade over the current lefty bullpen arm in Tony Sipp. Sipp has had a WHIP over 1 for each of the past three years. While Liriano has not come out of the bullpen since the playoffs last year, he has been more effective in getting lefties out. Having a solid, consistent lefty reliever in the playoffs is the best gift that a team could give to its fans. I’ll always put everything down and watch Chris Devenski or Kenneth Giles, but I want a reliever I don’t have to watch. My dream is to see Liriano come in in September, and know I can go to the bathroom or get a beer. Knowing that I can miss a few pitches and everything won’t fall apart is the highest praise that I can give to a reliever.
So what did the Astros give up? Nori Aoki is a scrappy contact hitter who has made some exciting plays. His peak is not as exciting as Derek Fisher’s, though. Same goes for Teoscar. He showed flashes of potential in his few appearances with the big club, but will get more experience and time to shine in Toronto.
The trade that may have the biggest postseason impact on the Astros was the Dodgers adding Yu Darvish. Dervish, when healthy, is still an elite pitcher, and can help any team in a playoff series. While his leaving the Rangers means we will see him less often, the times we would see Yu would be high leverage World Series games.
While the Astros didn’t add a whole lot at the trade deadline, they also weren’t forced to give up a lot. Also, does the best team in the AL really need to add that much more?