Cubs acquire Dexter Fowler in a trade with the Astros


Update #2 (11:10 AM ET): Jeff Passan of Yahoo sports reports that third baseman Luis Valbuena is also going to the Astros.

Update (10:58 AM ET): Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that pitcher Dan Straily is one of the players going to the Astros in the Fowler deal. The Cubs had acquired Straily from the Athletics last year in the Jeff Samardzija deal.

. . .

Bruce Levine of 670 The Score is reporting that the Cubs are close to acquiring outfielder Dexter Fowler from the Astros. Fowler is in his third and final year of arbitration eligibility and can become a free agent after the 2015 season.

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports says the Astros’ return includes major league players.

Fowler, 29 in March, batted .276/.375/.399 with eight home runs, 35 RBI, and 11 stolen bases in 505 plate appearances last season. He missed a month and a half between the end of June and mid-August due to a back injury.

The Astros had been shopping Fowler during the off-season, so it isn’t surprising to see him moved. The Blue Jays were one potential suitor as recently as December.

Lucas Giolito earns second shutout of season

Nick Wosika/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Leave a comment

The Twins have arguably baseball’s scariest offense. Their average of 5.87 runs per game is second only to the Yankees (5.90) while leading the league in slugging percentage (.501), OPS (.840), and home runs (244). White Sox starter Lucas Giolito made their offense look impotent on Wednesday, blanking them over nine innings for his second shutout of the season. The White Sox won 4-0.

Giolito allowed just three hits and walked none while fanning 12 batters over his nine innings of work. He’s now 14-6 with a 3.20 ERA and a 194/51 K/BB ratio in 151 2/3 innings on the season. Giolito is very much in the AL Cy Young Award picture. The Astros’ Justin Verlander leads the league in ERA at 2.81. A strong finish to the season for Giolito could certainly see his ERA dip below 3.00.

As mentioned, Wednesday’s shutout was Giolito’s second of the season. He and the Indians’ Shane Bieber are the only pitchers with multiple shutouts this season. They are two of only 21 pitchers with a shutout.