The Astros might not be done trading big leaguers.
According to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, starting pitcher Bud Norris “is available and drawing interest” from opposing teams. The Astros will hope to get a prospect or two in return for the right-hander, who was arbitration-eligible for the first time this winter and is under contractual control through 2015.
Norris posted an underwhelming 4.65 ERA and 1.37 WHIP over 168 1/3 innings last summer for Houston, but he owns a promising 8.8 career K/9 and would be capable of eating innings at the back end of a contending teams’ starting rotation.
The Orioles, Padres and Cardinals have been linked to Norris at different points this offseason.
Cubs infielder/outfielder Ben Zobrist has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with back soreness. The move is retroactive to April 14. While it doesn’t appear to be the precursor to any serious injury, Zobrist has already missed six straight days of activity after feeling his back tighten up last weekend. Should he see the minimum time on the DL, as expected, he’ll be eligible to return by the start of the Cubs’ series against the Indians on Tuesday.
Prior to his injury, the 36-year-old outfielder raked an impressive .326/.408/.465 with three extra-base hits in 49 plate appearances. He last appeared for the Cubs during their homestand last weekend and helped propel the team to a 14-10 win over the Braves with three hits, two walks and two RBI. Provided that he can remain healthy going forward, it’s a promising start for the veteran outfielder, who has yet to return to the All-Star-worthy numbers he posted with the club in 2016.
With Zobrist sidelined for the time being, Ian Happ and Albert Almora Jr. have shared the leadoff spot and center field duties over the last week. Happ went 0-for-8 with six strikeouts in two games before passing the baton to Almora, who collected five hits and two RBI in 11 at-bats.