Coinciding with game 37 on the season we're going to look at quite possibly the most important and lopsided trade in the history of the Houston Astros.
Signed in 1986 by the Astros Larry Andersen would become notorious, not only for his work on the mound but for what the Astros got in return by trading him to the Boston Red Sox in 1990, Jeff Bagwell.
At age 37, in his fifth season with the Astros Andersen was off to another fabulous start as a relief pitcher. Through 73.2 innings he posted a 1.95 ERA with the Astros, which translated to a 191 OPS+. Andersen would go on to pitch even better for the Red Sox, in 22 innings he posted a 1.23 ERA and a 338 OPS+. By the end of the 1990 season Andersen compiled a 1.79 ERA in 95.2 innings with a 213 ERA+. Those numbers were no fluke for Andersen either. In five seasons withe Houston Andersen compiled a 141 ERA+ in 410.1 innings pitched.
The year prior, 1989, Andersen posted a 222 ERA+ in 87.2 innings, at the age of 36. In 17 years at the Major League level Andersen posted a 121 ERA+ almost entirely in a relief role. He was an effective reliable arm out of the bullpen, and according to Alyson Footer a character in the clubhouse.
After Boston he would sign on to play in San Diego and Philadelphia, where he had success, but not the type of success he had in Houston both on and off the field.