The Arizona Diamondbacks announced that the team has traded left handed reliever Oliver Perez to the Houston Astros on Friday night. The announcement came literally minutes after the Diamondbacks 2-0 win against the Cincinnati Reds.
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The Diamondbacks will receive left hander, Junior Garcia, from Class A Tri-City of the New York-Pennsylvania League.
With Perez’s now open roster spot, the Diamondbacks also announced that they will select left handed pitcher, Keith Hessler, from Triple-A Reno. Hessler is 4-2 with a 1.86 ERA in 47 minor league games spanning across Single-A Visalia, Double-A Mobile and Triple-A Reno.
Yes, the non-waiver trade deadline passed on July 31, but that doesn’t mean teams can’t still make deals. For the Diamondbacks to have traded Perez, he must have been placed on waivers first.
Garcia is only 19 years old and is from the Dominican Republic. Between pitching in rookie ball and low A ball, he’s pitched well posting a 0.96 ERA in 37.1 innings. He still has a way to go before he reaches the majors, so, don’t expect him to make a difference with the Diamondbacks anytime soon.
A trade involving Perez doesn’t really come as a surprise. The Diamondbacks aren’t contenders this season, they aren’t necessarily “sellers” either, but there are a few players on the team that could help a contender out and Perez is one of those players.
Perez had a rocky start to the season, but really settled in as the year went along. He’s carrying a 3.10 ERA in 29 innings pitched. He’s also holding left handed batters down to .183 average. Barring any sort of monumental collapse, a left handed reliever can be very valuable to a playoff bound team like Houston.
Aside from the stats, there is another side to the trade coin, the contractual situation. Perez is making $2.5 million this season and will be a free agent at the end of the season. If the Diamondbacks weren’t confident he would resign in Arizona, or if they just weren’t planning on trying to resign him, it would make sense to deal him and get something in return before he’s gone.
It’s no guarantee that the Diamondbacks are done dealing players. There are still a few players left in Arizona that fit the “help a contender” mold, stay tuned for more potential trades.