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Astros Hot Stove Rumor: Houston offered 3/$39 to RP Robertson

A Twitter source claims that the Astros have offered 3 years $39 to David Robertson. True? Maybe. Realistic? Maybe. Worth it? Probably not.

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After going months (it seems like) without even a sniff of an Astros rumor, "baseball analyst and reporter" Mibelt Rodriguez Tweets that a firsthand source has informed him that the mystery team who has offered 3 years and $39 million to ex-Yankee closer David Robertson is our own Bayou City Astros.

Now, take that for what it's worth and don't get all riled up, because there are several important things to note.

First, the scuttlebutt is that since Robertson has not accepted this offer, he is presumably holding out for a deal of longer duration and/or higher annual value.  Since we all know, or at least suspect, that the Astros set a strict value to their own players and free agents, they seem unlikely to get too deep into a bidding war above their price point, particularly for a "fungible" reliever -- a position they've hardly shelled out high dollars for under this front office.

Second, and all respect to Mr. Rodriguez who may have a legitimate source and may be 100% accurate in his tweet, but I have no idea who Mibelt Rodriguez is.  He's posted a few other rumors lately, including one about the Red Sox being willing to match anything the Cubs throw at Jon Lester, but as far as I or Google can tell, Mr. Rodriguez has no known affiliations with baseball or baseball media, not even one as disreputable as writing free contributions for a fan-run sports blog conglomerate (note: typed with a self-deprecating smile).  Most of his analysis is the type that has become so common on Twitter -- commentary on public quotes from inside sources.  That doesn't mean he's wrong, because he has nothing (presumably) to gain by making things up.  But I do wonder about his source's access to such information as actual-factual knowledge of contracts tendered by the Astros front office.

As far as David Robertson to the Astros goes, if they sign Robertson, it would be the most expensive free agent signing of the Crane/Luhnow era, far surpassing the 3-year, $30 million contract awarded to Scott Feldman last season.  Not that the Astros haven't tried.  By all reports, they were in on Jose Abreu and Masahiro Tanaka during fierce bidding competition last offseason.  But with Robertson, not only would the Astros be investing a big ol' chunk o' change for a guy who will pitch 65 innings per season at most, but the Astros would also be losing the Marlins' 2015 draft pick that they received in the Jarred Cosart trade.  Under the collective bargaining agreement, free agents who receive a qualifying offer from their recently-departed club as Robertson received from the Yankees will cost the signing club their highest non-protected draft pick.  That draft pick figures to be in the low-30's next season for the Astros, a pick which they used in 2014 to draft center fielder Derek Fisher, who lit Tri Cities on fire with a .303/.378/.408 line with 17 steals in only 41 games and the front office reportedly loves.  Will they really want to spend perhaps $50 million and give up the chance for another Derek Fisher-type prospect?

Is Robertson worth it?  This author says no.  But you may have a different opinion, so please share in the comments.