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Aaron Sanchez Reportedly Traded from Blue Jays to Astros Ahead of 2019 Deadline

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistJuly 31, 2019

Toronto Blue Jays' Aaron Sanchez delivers a pitch during the first inning of a baseball game against the New York Yankees Friday, July 12, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
Frank Franklin II/Associated Press

The Houston Astros acquired right-handed pitcher Aaron Sanchez from the Toronto Blue Jays ahead of the 2019 MLB trade deadline Wednesday, according to Jon Heyman of MLB Network.

Shi Davidi of Sportsnet.ca noted Houston also added right-handed reliever Joe Biagini in the deal, while Toronto received outfielder Derek Fisher.

The 27-year-old Sanchez is enduring the toughest year of his career, having gone 3-14 with a 6.07 ERA and a 1.69 WHIP in 23 starts. Not only does he lead the majors in losses, but his ERA and WHIP are also on pace to be his worst of any season in which he pitched at least 90 innings.

This comes just three years after he was selected to the American League All-Star team, when he went 15-2 with a 3.00 ERA for the Blue Jays in 2016.

Although a change of scenery could rejuvenate Sanchez, his 2019 home-road splits have not been pleasant in any location:

  • Home: 11 starts, 2-6, 57.1 IP, 5.34 ERA, 1.54 WHIP, seven home runs, 59 strikeouts, 28 walks
  • Road: 12 starts, 1-8, 55.1 IP, 6.83 ERA, 1.84 WHIP, eight home runs, 40 strikeouts, 31 walks

One bright spot, though, has been his ability to induce grounders. His 47.0 ground-ball percentage ranks 11th among American League starting pitchers, per FanGraphs.

Injuries plagued Sanchez in 2017 and 2018. But now he is healthy and moving from a team that is 19 games out of the playoff picture to one with an eight-game division lead.

Sanchez joins a Houston squad that already features 2011 American League Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander, three-time All-Star Gerrit Cole and 2012 All-Star Wade Miley in the rotation. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reported the Astros also acquired 2009 AL Cy Young Award winner Zack Greinke at the deadline from the Arizona Diamondbacks.

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