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Astros Trade for Oscar Villarreal

The Astros have traded minor-league outfielder Josh Anderson to the Braves for reliever Oscar Villarreal.

Villarreal's not a great reliever, but he's reasonably young and can keep the ball in the park and not embarrass you. In short, he's useful. As such, this is a great deal for Houston, who only give up an outfielder who's already 25 and put up a .666 OPS in Class AAA last year. But - wait for it - he's fast! He can't play, but he's fast!

As much as I like this deal for the Astros - they're basically getting a decent reliever for a guy who'll be a fifth outfielder if everything breaks right - I'm not sure I understand it. A couple weeks ago they traded Brad Lidge for three players, the best of whom is a fast outfielder who really isn't very good (Michael Bourn). I guess they must have figured they now have too many fast outfielders who weren't very good. And not enough relievers. Which makes one wonder why they made the Lidge trade in the first place.