Astros will be sellers, but “unlikely to trade” Hunter Pence

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Houston has MLB’s worst record at 28-51, which puts them on a 57-105 pace and all but guarantees the Astros will be trying to unload various veterans for any kind of long-term help they can get before the trade deadline.

However, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com “the Astros remain unlikely to trade right fielder Hunter Pence unless new owner Jim Crane is approved before July 31 and orders such a move.”

Pence is Houston’s best player, but he’s also earning $6.9 million this season with a hike to at least $8-9 million due in 2012 and as a 28-year-old with an .820 career OPS he’s hardly an elite hitter. Plus, even if the Astros are somehow able to successfully rebuild in just a couple seasons Pence will be 30 years old and on the verge of free agency by then.

Hanging on to Pence may help appease a frustrated fan base in the short term, but if there’s a contending team willing to pay a star-level price for Pence in trade the Astros would probably be better off in the long term if they can cash him in.

Tim Anderson exits game with apparent ankle injury

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White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson needed help leaving the field after suffering an ankle injury in the fifth inning of Tuesday night’s game against the Red Sox at Fenway Park. Anderson was fielding a ball hit up the middle by J.D. Martinez, appearing to twist his ankle in the process.

Leury García moved from center field to shortstop and Ryan Cordell entered the game to play center field. Anderson was 2-for-3 with a double and a run scored on the night.

The White Sox should be able to provide more information later tonight or tomorrow. Anderson is in the midst of his best season, entering Tuesday batting .313/.338/.485 with 11 home runs, 37 RBI, 38 runs scored, and 15 stolen bases in 278 plate appearances.