Old friend alert!
Former ace of the Devil Rays, career-renaissance'd Scott Kazmir is on the move to the Houston Astros. Check it:
Something brewing with #Athletics and Scott Kazmir. He just came out of Bob Melvin's office. Asst GM David Forst also in clubhouse.— Ron Kroichick (@ronkroichick) July 23, 2015
Kazmir now hugging teammates goodbye. #Athletics will have new starter for today's game vs Blue Jays— Ron Kroichick (@ronkroichick) July 23, 2015
Scott Kazmir has been traded to #Astros for Jake Nottingham and Dan Mengden, source confirms.— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) July 23, 2015
Kazmir is a Houston native, making the deal a homecoming for Kaz, and sending the starter with a top-five ERA this season to a postseason contender.
My first reaction is to say that the Rays have slimmer Wild Card odds now, as the Angels and Astros look locked into a post-season run. Praise DeJesus there are two slots.
But to the Rays benefit, it also looks like the Athletics are officially for sale, making some of their pitchers available.
If the Rays wanted a reliever in the Jesse Crain mold to bring over, as they did in the maybe-days of the 2013 deadline, then Fernando Rodriguez is an interesting name to follow.
Photo credit: Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images
Rodriguez has a 1.56 FIP over 28 innings, with 36 K's and nice free passes. 31 years old at the moment, he surprisingly has two years of arbitration left to go. Traditionally a pitcher with a live arm but lack of control, he seems to have tamed his wild side.
Other relievers of note in Oakland include Drew Pomeranz, Tyler Clippard, and if the Rays wanted to target a swingman (to move Colome to the bullpen early), Jesse Chavez is worth an ask as well.
Finally, it's interesting to note the prospects on the move. Using the mid-season rankings at Crawfish Boxes, catcher Jacob Nottingham and change-of-scenery candidate RHP Daniel Mengden rank 9th and 13th on the list, respectively. That could come in handy for judging market value in the near future.