Houston, We Have a Problem: Leaked Information Reveals Failed A’s-Astros Trade


May 2, 2014; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Astros pitching coach Brent Strom (53) talks with starting pitcher Brad Peacock (41) during the sixth inning against the Seattle Mariners at Minute Maid Park. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

This morning brought the revealing (no pun intended) revelation that “Ground Control” – the private front office database of the Houston Astros had been hacked, and subsequently ten months of recorded player movement notes posted to the the hacker site, Anonbin. As originally published by the always entertaining Deadspin.comthe article proceeds to transcribe some of the juicer items of the leaked information such as Houston’s overtures to acquire Giancarlo Stanton, and futile attempts last summer to coerce a top prospect out of middling starting pitcher, Bud Norris. Overall it’s a fascinating, introspective look into the inner clockwork of a Major League organization.

The Athletics, if the database is to be believed are not exempt from the trade potpourri that poured out this A.M, much to the dismay of Houston’s baseball brain trust. Apparently, Athletics general manager Billy Beane propositioned Houston while auctioning off left-hander Brett Anderson last winter, requested a return of two from a short list of catcher Max Stassi, pitcher Brad Peacock, and infielder Delino DeShields, Jr.

"“12/4/2013″,” BB offered Anderson for two of Deshields, Peacock, Stassi.”"

Obviously an agreement failed to materialize, and the injury-prone Anderson was shipped to Colorado for Drew Pomeranz and minor league pitcher Chris Jansen just six days after the notes were entered. With a pre-chair incident Pomeranz vastly out pitching the oft-injured Anderson, it’s safe to say the Athletics have received the better end of the deal for the time being. However, a bounty of Stassi and Peacock – essentially the package dealt to Houston a year prior with Chris Carter in the Jed Lowrie deal would have made an intriguing coup for the outspoken starter. After suffering a season-ending concussion last season in the majors, the 23-year old Stassi was assigned to Oklahoma City, Houston’s AAA affiliate where’s he posted a .238/.280/..392 batting line in 259 plate appearances. His addition would have certainly added to Oakland’s upper level catching surplus, and one would have to wonder if the Yuba City native would have been fodder for another trade. Peacock, would have slid into consideration for the longman/fifth starter race ala Pomeranz and would had conceivably had a shot to make the club out of spring training. The right-hander has spent the majority of the season in Houston’s rotation, posting a 4.21 ERA, 4.45 FIP, with 7.8 K/9 and 5.0 BB/9 in 72 2/3 innings pitched.

DeShields, Jr., who has inherited the speed of his paternal namesake entered 2014 as Houston’s sixth ranked prospect according to MLB.com. The 21-year old recording an astonishing 102 stolen bases in 2012, and was returned to his natural position of centerfield after being drafted as a second baseman. The 21-year old has been slow to recover in 2014 from a frightening hit-by-pitch which left him with a grotesquely swollen face and non-displace maxillary sinus fracture, resulted in a heavily circulated photo of his facial injuries. Upon returning to active duty, DeShields has posted a .241/.339//345 line with 30 stolen bases in 57 games played at Double-A Corpus Christi.

Despite the trade failing to fall through, it should be noted that Billy Beane’s fixation on players more times than not results in his eventual acquisition of them. Whether any of the trio of Astros one day become Athletics remains to be seen, but let’s just hope someone in Houston changed their password for future reference.