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Are the Astros the Most Interested in Trevor Bauer?

Could the Astros trade for nemesis pitcher Trevor Bauer?

MLB: Cleveland Indians at Houston Astros Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Last night, when Alex Bregman was announced at the All-Star home run derby, Indians fans booed him. It wasn’t everyone, but they remember the Astros eliminating them last year in the playoffs. They also remember Bregman’s interactions with Tyler, I mean, Trevor Bauer. Their interactions on social media have been something to watch.

Bauer threw the last stone when he made a video using Bregman’s bobblehead, asking if he enjoyed being dominated. You know Bregman is waiting for the best time to get Bauer back. Maybe it will have to wait till they share the same locker room. Wait. What?

Did I just bury the lede?

It’s no secret that the Astros will be looking for at least one more starter before the July 31st trade deadline. With Corbin Martin having Tommy John surgery and Forrest Whitley rehabbing in West Palm Beach, the Astros don’t want a rental. They want a pitcher who could help in 2019 and beyond. This is what the Astros are good at, not looking just at the current season’s needs.

Gerrit Cole, Collin McHugh, and Wade Miley are all due to hit free agency after 2019. This will leave Justin Verlander and Lance McCullers Jr. as the only sure thing in the rotation for 2020. Some names we have heard tied to the Astros are Marcus Stroman and Matthew Boyd among others. The once great Indians rotation is dealing with injuries so that they may look to trade a starter away. The only one tradable and healthy is Bauer, but the Astros wouldn’t trade for him, right?

That would not be a true statement, according to Joel Sherman. He wrote that the Yankees are interested in Bauer, but the Astros “are said to be among the most interested.” As Sherman wrote, Bauer will not be a free agent until after the 2020 season. He is a workhorse, leading the majors in innings pitched this year and has a decent spin rate as well. If the Astros could trade for Bauer, it could make them the World Series favorites with that rotation.

It won’t be cheap.

However, the Indians are still looking to compete in 2019 and hope to get some of their starters back. If Corey Kluber and Carlos Carasco could return, they would be more likely to trade Bauer away. Sherman suggested a trade similar to the Chris Archer, where the Rays got Austin Meadows and Tyler Glasnow. Both players instantly helped the Rays become a better team, not prospects they had to wait for. It won’t be cheap. Also, look for any trade to be done closer to the trade deadline.

The article seemed to hover around Clint Frazier from the Yankees. However, it may take a Kyle Tucker plus others to get the deal done for the Astros. Jeff Luhnow has already said that they will not trade Tucker, but they may have no choice. Before you say give them Derek Fisher and Rogelio Armenteros, that’s not how it works. It would be interesting to see how much the Astros go after Bauer, especially with his history with the team.

Bregman is not the only Astro that Bauer has butted heads with. Bauer and Cole have a long rivalry from their days in College. Bauer has become a player that’s not afraid to say what’s on his mind. He has called out many pitchers for all of a sudden being able to increase their spin rate. Could Bauer be integrated into this Astros locker room?

Someone asked on Twitter how Cole would feel if the Astros traded for Bauer? In response, I said that they could compare the size of their spin rates. While any PR department would probably be nervous bringing on an opinionated Bauer, he probably would fit into the clubhouse. Wouldn’t it be ironic if after all the smack talk the past couple years, Bregman and Bauer became real buddies?

This is an interesting rumor, and you know the Astros will do the best to get their guy. Bauer is 8-6 on the season with a 3.61 ERA while striking out 149 hitters in 132 innings pitched. Bauer’s slider is ranked as the 36th best spin rate in the game with 2724 RPM. Let’s wait till there is some more chatter about Bauer, but he would be an Astros type of pitcher to add. It could be a high price to pay, but he could be worth it. Do you think Bauer would be a good pickup?