It seemed obvious that the Rockies knew they could find a taker for Aaron Harang when they designated him for assignment immediately after acquiring him from the Dodgers for Ramon Hernandez last week and sure enough Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that they’re close to trading him to the Mariners.
According to Rosenthal the two sides are in the process of getting approval from MLB, which is required whenever a trade involves more than $1 million in cash. Harang is making $7 million this season with a $7 million mutual option or $2 million buyout for 2014, although the Dodgers already chipped in $4.25 million to cover much of that.
Harang falling out of favor with the Dodgers had more to do with their rotation depth than his performance, which has been pretty solid for the past two seasons with a 3.62 ERA in 59 starts. His secondary numbers haven’t been nearly as good, but it won’t be tough for Harang to be an upgrade in Seattle’s rotation.
UPDATE: It’s a done deal. Colorado sends Harang and cash to Seattle for 26-year-old minor-league reliever Steven Hensley, who isn’t much of a prospect.
No surprise here: The Astros are headed back to the postseason to defend their title following a landslide 11-3 win over the Angels on Friday. This figures to be their third playoff run since 2015, though they have yet to wrap up the AL West with a division title.
First baseman Yuli Gurriel led the charge on Friday, smashing a grand slam in the first inning and tacking on a two-run homer in the second and RBI single in the fifth to help the Astros to a seven-run lead. The Angels eventually returned fire, first with Mike Trout‘s 418-foot homer in the sixth, then with an RBI hit from Francisco Arcia in the seventh, but they couldn’t close the gap in time to overtake the Astros.
On the mound, right-hander Gerrit Cole clinched his 15th win of the year after holding the Angels to seven innings of three-run, 12-strikeout ball. His sixth strikeout of the night — delivered on an 83.1-MPH knuckle curveball to Kaleb Cowart — also marked the 1,000th strikeout of his career to date. He was backed by flawless performances by lefty reliever Tony Sipp and rookie right-hander Dean Deetz, both of whom turned in scoreless innings as the offense barreled toward an 11-3 finish with Jake Marisnick‘s sac bunt and George Springer‘s three-run shot in the eighth.
Despite having qualified for the playoffs, the Astros still carry a magic number of 6 as they look to clinch a third straight division title. They’re currently up against the Athletics, who entered Friday’s contest against the Twins just four games back of first place in the AL West.