In their continuing attempt to rebuild, the Houston Astros traded star first baseman Lance Berkman to the New York Yankees for young pitcher Mark Melancon and minor league infielder Jimmy Paredes.
Compared to his past production, Berkman had a down year in 2009, hitting .274 with 25 home runs and 80 RBI. 2010 has been his worst year to date, as he is batting only .245 with 13 home runs and 49 RBI. In the past, he posted averages as high as .331, with home runs totals reaching 45.
Melancon, a relief pitcher, does not have much major league experience—only 15 games worth since his debut in 2009. He has gone 6-1 with a 3.67 ERA in 40 games in the minors this year. 21-year-old Paredes is hitting .282 with 36 stolen bases in the minor leagues.
The Yankees are receiving a proven star in Berkman—though he is slumping—that should eventually break free from his struggles and produce as he once did. For the moment, they got the better end of the deal.
That said, the Astros garnered a couple solid young players. If Paredes develops properly, he may become a leadoff type of hitter. Melancon has a penchant for striking batters out, which could help an ailing Astros team later on. As with all prospects, of course, there is always the chance they will not pan out.
Tags: Baseball, Houston Astros, New York Yankees