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2016 Winter Meetings: Is the Royals’ Danny Duffy a target for the Astros?

Could Houston turn their focus to a lesser target after missing on Sale?

MLB: Kansas City Royals at Detroit Tigers Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Astros weren’t able to strike gold with Chris Sale but the team could be looking for another left-handed fireballer to help bolster the rotation — Danny Duffy.

MLB Network's Jon Morosi reports the Royals are gauging interest for the left-hander at the Winter Meetings.

Duffy, 27, was a third-round selection by the Royals in the 2007 MLB Draft out of high school. He was 12-3 with 3.51 ERA in 42 games (26 starts) last season with the Royals including 188 strikeouts and 42 walks in 179 2/3 innings. He had a 1.141 WHIP, 124 ERA+, 3.79 xFIP, and a .291 BABIP.

The cynic in me says Duffy sounds like Mike Fiers with one less year of control. But Brian points out in our TCB email threads — “Duffy was mediocre in April and bad in September. May through August, 2.92 ERA, 4.89 K/BB.”

Those numbers aren’t anything to balk at, but would it take to get a deal done?