The Pittsburgh Pirates acquired pitcher Wandy Rodriguez from the Houston Astros for three minor- league prospects as they seek a Major League Baseball postseason berth for the first time since 1992.
Rodriguez has a 7-9 record with a 3.79 earned run average in 21 starts this season for an Astros team that has the worst record in the majors at 34-64.
The 33-year-old left-hander now joins a Pirates’ club that is in second place in the National League Central Division with a 54-42 record, 2 1/2 games behind the Cincinnati Reds. Pittsburgh has had 20 straight losing seasons since making the NL Championship Series three years in a row from 1990-92.
“Wandy has quietly ranked among the upper echelon of major league starting pitchers the last three seasons in ERA, innings pitched and strikeouts, among other categories,” Pirates General Manager Neal Huntington said in a statement. “We believe he will be a solid addition to our rotation for the remainder of this season and beyond.”
Rodriguez, who has a 80-84 career record, ranks third among National League left-handers in wins and strikeouts since the start of the 2009 season, trailing only Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Cole Hamels of the Philadelphia Phillies. He moves into a Pirates’ rotation that includes Erik Bedard, A.J. Burnett, James McDonald, Kevin Correia and Jeff Karstens.
The Pirates will pay Rodriguez $1.7 million for the rest of this season, $8.5 million of his $13 million salary in 2013 and $7.5 million in 2014 if a player option is exercised, MLB.com said. Pittsburgh sent outfielder Robbie Grossman and left-handed pitchers Rudy Owens and Colton Cain to Houston.
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