Houston Astros to host Rojos del Águila de Veracruz for Exhibition Games Next Year

A Diablos Rojos del México player signs autographs for fans during an exhibition game with the Rangers earlier this year. - USA TODAY Sports

The Astros acquired Mexican players Japhet Amador and Leo Heras from the Diablos Rojos del México last month. Now the Astros plan on further increasing ties with Mexico by hosting one of its professional teams.

On Wednesday, President José Antonio Mansur Galán of the Rojos del Águila de Veracruz announced a deal that would bring the Rojos del Águila team to Minute Maid park next year for two exhibition games, according to Más Deportes. Pending Mexican League approval of the dates, the games will take place on March 29th and March 30th, before the Astros get ready to open up the 2014 Regular Season against the Yankees.

This move follows in the footsteps of the Texas Rangers when the Diablos Rojos played exhibition games at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. Unlike the Rangers, however, the Astros hope the exhibition games can provide more than just a warm-up before the regular season by generating more interest among Mexican players to become part of a developing player pipeline out of Mexico. Hosting exhibition games is just a beginning part of that process, and in the future Astros may play a regular season series or two down in Mexico, which was mentioned as a possibility by Jeff Luhnow in an article written by Brian McTaggart a while back.

As far as the exhibition games go, a press conference tomorrow is expected to announce the official details as Astros GM, Jeff Luhnow and the Governor of Veracruz, Dr. Javier Duarte de Ochoa will make a "significant" joint announcement with officials from both teams in attendance.

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