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MLB Roundup 1/10: The Astros are interested in Gerrit Cole

The defending champs may get even better.

St Louis Cardinals v Pittsburgh Pirates Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images

The Astros are interested in Gerrit Cole

Houston is obviously one of the very best teams in baseball having just won a championship. There is little reason to believe they won’t be one of the favorites to win again next year, and that’s if they do nothing this offseason. Apparently, that’s not the plan though as they have expressed interest in Pirates ace Gerrit Cole. For their part, Pittsburgh is reportedly asking for Forrest Whitley or Kyle Tucker, two of Houston’s best prospects and two of the best prospects in the game. Derek Fisher has also come up in talks. Cole is a talented pitcher and would help a Houston rotation that is still very top-heavy, but that’s still a steep price. At this point, the reputation is ahead of the actual on-field production for the former first overall pick. He’s still only 27 and there is still time for him to take that step forward, but it’s hard to see the Astros giving up that kind of package for a guy who would be, at best, the third best starter on their roster. If the price comes down, though, they could very well pounce and give the Red Sox even more competition in the American League.

  • The Angels signed Rene Rivera to be their backup catcher. The Red Sox obviously weren’t in the market for a major-league catcher, but this is a scarier move than it seems. Rivera is far from a star and won’t play much, but he is a really strong defensive catcher. The Angels are going to have the best defense in baseball next year.
  • Blue Jays GM Ross Atkins acknowledged that the Blue Jays have interest in Christian Yelich, though he also acknowledged that everyone has interest in Christian Yelich. The vibe around the league seems to be that a deal won’t get done, but Toronto is in a solid position to strike a deal with a need in the outfield and one of the game’s stronger farm systems.