Roberto Osuna Fastball

Roberto Osuna Traded to Houston Astros for Ken Giles And Two Prospects

In a shocking move, the Blue Jays Monday have reportedly traded suspended closer Roberto Osuna to the Houston Astros.

Osuna has been on the restricted list since being charged for domestic violence in May, and has been serving a 75 game suspension retroactive to his being placed on the restricted list. Ever since being placed on the restricted list for that charge, speculation has swirled around what the Blue Jays were going to do with the once star reliever. The initial comments from Ross Atkins were that the 23 year old righty would return as the closer, though that is no longer the case as Osuna will now be suiting up for the Houston Astros when he’s eligible to return on August 4th.

It was quite the fall from grace for young hurler, who was seen as a long term, core piece of the team’s bullpen, ever since his rapid ascent to the closing role in 2015. And while the Blue Jays no longer have that core piece, they also no longer have to deal with the potential public relations problem that having an alleged domestic abuser on the team would be.

Osuna refused to comment to the media following the trade, per Sean Addis, who was covering the Bisons game.

As for what the Jays will get back:

Ken Giles is 27 year old reliever with some experience closing, who has been fantastic in his career prior to this season. He has spent the majority of his career with the Astros. Though his current ERA is a career high 4.99 and he has been sent to the minors following an outburst after being removed from a game, his track record suggests an excellent late inning option for a Jays team that has run through many of those in Osuna’s absence. The Athletic’s Eno Sarris has a theory as to why Giles may be struggling- his slider has fallen off a cliff (and not in the fun/valuable way):

Giles still has an elite K/BB ratio of  this year of 10.33 which comes thanks to an incredible three walks allowed in 30 2/3 innings. With the improved control and potential for a return of his plus breaking ball, Giles could basically be for the Jays what Osuna was from 2015-2017.

UPDATES: Straight from the Official Twitter account, the Jays are getting two more players:

The Jays are getting two additional pitching prospects, Hector Perez and David Paulino. Perez is 10th on’s Astros’ prospects list, and is a 22 year old righthander currently with the Astros’ AA affiliate, having been signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2014. Here is some of what had to say about Perez: “Opponents struggle to make solid contact against Perez, who has four pitches that can grade as plus or better but lose effectiveness when he can’t tame them. He’s athletic enough to figure out control and command, but his delivery has timing issues that have prevented him from ever throwing consistent strikes. His walk rate jumped from 4.5 per nine innings in his first two seasons to 6.5 in his third, a sign that he’s more likely to become a late-inning reliever than a frontline starter.”

Paulino is a 24 year old who spent some of the season in AAA, and came to the Astros in a 2013 deal with the Tigers. Though he ranks 23rd on’s list, he was 8th on Baseball Prospectus’ list prior to the season. From BP, the positives on Paulino:  “Paulino has shown Top 101 stuff on the mound throughout his minor league career. He has a plus fastball that gets extreme plane due to his height and extension. He has a full four-pitch mix with two useable breakers. The curve is potentially plus. The change isn’t too bad. He already has major league time.”

While this isn’t the return they might have gotten for Osuna prior to the season, the Jays did well from a baseball perspective to add a couple more solid pitching prospects as well as a bona fide major league reliever, making the best out of a potentially nightmarish situation.


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