Earlier Friday evening, the Philadelphia Phillies finalized a four-player traded with the Houston Astros to land Hunter Pence. Going the other way are Jarred Cosart, Jonathan Singleton, Josh Zeid and a player to be named later. Was this the plan all along? Let's ask Astros GM Ed Wade:
Ed Wade said he didn’t know #Phillies were the best match for Pence until "about 10 minutes before we finalized the deal."
As for the PTBNL, Jayson Stark reports that the Astros will select from a list of players in the low minors. It won't be a top prospect, so it won't change the balance of this trade from wherever you think it currently is.
The Phillies landed Pence because they were comfortable giving up the necessary talent, while their division rivals in Atlanta were not. Ken Rosenthal says that the Braves were reluctant to meet the Astros' demands, which included two of the Braves' four top pitching prospects. The Braves are a more conservative organization than the Phillies are, for better or for worse, and the difference in philosophy was put on display.
See you tomorrow Philadelphia!
The saga's all over, and once again, Ruben Amaro has gotten his guy. For the time being, Pence will replace Domonic Brown in the Phillies' starting lineup, and Brown will get sent to triple-A so he can play every day.