Yesterday it was all but announced that the Astros are expected to dismiss general manager Ed Wade. Wade's kind of been the laughing stock of NL GMs over the past several years - since he was hired at the end of 2007, actually.
The Rockies have a decent history of trading with the Astros. In fact, the Astros are the team that Pedro Astacio went to after his tenure with the Rockies. More recently, the Rockies made that one trade where Jason Jennings was sent to Houston in exchange for Jason Hirsh, Willy Taveras, and Jason Hirsh. Neither of these trades involved Ed Wade, but there's a history of the Rockies and Astros trading, anyhow.
As for Wade, none of his moves were ever that earth-shattering. Mostly they were headscratching and led most of us to wonder what the Astros' end goal in everything was. I mean, they acquired Miguel Tejada to play SS after it seemed blatantly obvious that it was time for Tejada to shift over to 3B. Granted, the talent he gave up ended up mostly not panning out. But still, Miguel Tejada was the piece that could push a team that was merely a shadow of its former glory back to the upper echelon of the NL.
It kind of has me wondering, though. Ed Wade was the GM who presided over the Philadelphia Phillies, and more importantly, their farm that's blossomed into the NL powerhouse they are today. Ed Wade is also the GM who so desperately tried to bring the Astros back to the "World Series or Bust" team that the mid 2000s embodied.
So while none of those Astros teams past 2005 made it anywhere and while none of those player acquisitions really shook the baseball world, at least they tried. Which then has me wondering... what's worse? Is it worse to make a bunch of stupid and/or questionable trades and signings in an effort to push your team over the top, or to constantly sit pat and tends to hover around .500 with the occasional postseason run? Is it better to have a GM who tries to make your team better, or one that puts together one good team and then attempts to sit on that one winning team, regardless of actual results, and hope that they'll take you back to glory?
Well, I don't know, but it keeps me up at night.
In case you were still on the "Yonder Alonso for Future 1B" campaign trail, don't get your hopes much higher than they are right now. In fact, lower them. Word on the internets is that the Reds want front line starting pitching for Alonso, and that's something the Rockies just won't have.
Speaking of starting pitching, regardless of where it is in terms of front or middle of the rotation, Wandy Rodriguez has an increasing amount of suitors. Take a look at the market that's developing for Mark Buerhle; teams need starting pitching, and they need it now. While whoever makes the decisions for Houston might not have TOO long of a leash this offseason, something tells me that we won't be landing Rodriguez for Christian Friedrich and Charlie Blackmon. The Astros have a very decent trade chip, and there's a market for them. I mean, hell, the Yankees just resigned Freddy Garcia; there's going to be a bigger market for Rodriguez than we were hoping.
That all said, the Rockies shouldn't sit pat, and they shouldn't be scared away from acquiring pitching depth. I mean, hell, Jeff Francis posted a higher fWAR than everybody on the Rockies' pitching staff in 2011. But it's going to be harder to find quality guys, and I hate to say it, but you're going to have to overpay for them, and likely make a deal that you'll regret down the line. I can only hope that the Rockies proceed carefully in their dealings this offseason. It has the makings of the offseason that sets a franchise back several years.