Jim Crane to be approved as Astros new owner later this month

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Via Maury comes news that Jim Crane’s candidacy to become the new owner of the Houston Astros is likely to be voted on at the next owners’ meetings, which take place on August 17th and 18th.  It’s expected that he’ll have smooth sailing.

I was asked yesterday if it was bad for the Astros that he wasn’t approved before the trade deadline.  Astros fans chime in here if you think differently, but I’m struggling to think of how it would have helped.  To have made a difference, he would have had to be on the job, have already fired Ed Wade, hired his replacement and his replacement would have had to make a thorough assessment of the system and everything.  I just don’t see how that could have happened in such a short time frame.

By being approved in late August he’ll have a little over a month to hang around and get to know the operations better.  And he’ll be able to be ready to pounce at good front office talent as soon as the season ends.

Report: Yankees could be in on Nolan Arenado

Nolan Arenado
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The Yankees appear to have moved on from free agent Manny Machado this winter, but could they be turning their attention to Rockies superstar Nolan Arenado? That’s the idea floated by Andy Martino of SNY, who hears that GM Brian Cashman has been involved in recent discussions concerning the third baseman. No official comments have been made to the press yet, though, and it’s not clear whether the Yankees would prefer to pursue Arenado prior to the 2019 season or partway through it.

The 27-year-old infielder earned his fourth consecutive All-Star nomination, Silver Slugger, and Gold Glove award in 2018 after slashing .297/.374/.561 with 38 home runs, a .935 OPS, and 5.7 fWAR across 673 plate appearances. There’s no question he’s provided immense value to Colorado’s lineup over the last half-decade, and his consistency and incredible power at the plate helped form the basis of the record $30 million arbitration figure he presented to the team last week. The Rockies countered at $24 million, however, and in doing so may have jeopardized their chances of convincing the infielder to forego free agency in 2020 and take a long-term deal instead.

Assuming he declines to negotiate an extension with the Rockies, Arenado’s decorated résumé and career-best 2018 numbers should attract plenty of interest around the league — a reality that could put considerable pressure on the Yankees (or any other interested party) to finesse a deal sooner rather than later. For now, the club is prepared to enter the 2019 season with hot-hitting third baseman Miguel Andújar, whom Martino speculates would be the “centerpiece” of any trade with Colorado.