MLB Rumors: Astros Listening to Offers on Big Name

 The Houston Astros have been very quiet this offseason, making only small moves around the edges thus far. Could they be persuaded to make a big splash on the trade market? 

According to MLB Insider Bob Nightengale of USA Today, they've received plenty of calls trying to pry one of their ace starting pitchers in a deal. 

The Houston Astros don’t plan to trade co-ace Framber Valdez, at least not this winter, but they are listening, with more than five teams already checking in on him.

It seems hard to believe that the Astros, who of course hope to be a playoff contender again in the American League in 2024, would trade their two-time All-Star starter, who has finished in the Top 10 in Cy Young voting for each of the past two seasons. He's 53-34 in his six-year career, with a 3.40 ERA. 

But the team is hoping to get under the luxury tax threshold, and therein lies the rub, leaving rival teams to consider the door ajar just a bit for acquiring someone like Valdez. According to Insider Ken Rosenthal, "Trading left-hander Framber Valdez, who is projected to earn $12.1 million in the second of his three years of arbitration, would create flexibility under the threshold."

The Stros rotation also features the likes of Justin Verlander and Christian Javier, so it'll be interesting to follow this storyline out of Houston.

Photo: rik Williams-USA TODAY Sports