UPDATE: Astros trade for Matt Lindstrom

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UPDATE: The deal is official now. Florida receives mid-level prospects Robert Bono and Luis Bryan, plus a player to be named later. And saves a bit of cash, of course.

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Houston has been shopping for bullpen help after closer Jose Valverde declined arbitration and setup man LaTroy Hawkins signed with the Brewers, and they’re reportedly on the verge of agreeing to a deal with the Marlins for Matt Lindstrom.
Nothing official has been announced yet, but Lindstrom informed MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro that his agent told him to “hang tight” because the two sides are exchanging medical records.
Florida was looking to deal Lindstrom because he struggled in 2009 and is due for a raise via arbitration, but he had a 3.11 ERA and 105/47 K/BB ratio in 124 innings over the previous two seasons and even the mid-payroll Astros won’t have any trouble handling a price tag around $2 million. Lindstrom has just 20 career saves, but if the trade goes through he’ll almost certainly take over for Valverde as the Astros’ closer and bring his mid-90s fastball to a permanent ninth-inning role.

Charlie Morton exits start with discomfort in right shoulder

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Astros pitcher Charlie Morton left Sunday’s start against the Angels after just one inning due to discomfort in his right shoulder, the team announced. Morton yielded a one-out double to Justin Upton, who later scored on a wild pitch. He averages about 96 MPH on his fastball but sat in the 92-94 MPH range in his one inning of work.

Morton, 34, went on the disabled list with right shoulder discomfort on August 29 and returned on September 8. It’s bad news for the Astros, who may have to go into the playoffs without him. If that is to be the case, Lance McCullers would take Morton’s spot in the rotation. It’s also bad news for Morton, who is a free agent after the season and figures to be one of the more sought-after starters.

Morton entered Sunday’s start 15-3 with a 3.15 ERA with a 195/63 K/BB ratio in 163 innings of work.