Sunday, June 23, 2013

Rebuilding, in one box score

On May 31, 2011 Jordan Lyles took the mound for his Major League debut at Wrigley Field in Chicago.  He would throw 7IP, 5H/2ER, 4K:0BB and would come out of the game in the 8th inning with a 1-0 lead. Two baserunners he allowed later scored in the inning, so he got the No Decision when the Astros scored six runs in the top of the 9th to defeat the Cubs, 7-3.

While looking at the box score (linked), I noticed something. Aside from Lyles, not a single player from that game - just over two seasons ago - is still with the Houston Astros. Two players are still with the organization, but everyone else is gone. Where did they go?

Let's look at the lineup:

1. Michael Bourn - CF
Traded - July 31, 2011 to Atlanta for Juan Abreu, Paul Clemens, Brett Oberholtzer, Jordan Schafer

2. Clint Barmes - SS
Granted free agency - October 30, 2011. With the compensation pick for "losing" Barmes to Pittsburgh, the Astros selected Lance McCullers, Jr. (H/T to @YoniPollak)

3. Hunter Pence - RF
Traded - July 29, 2011 to Phiadelphia for Jarred Cosart, Domingo Santana, Jon Singleton, Josh Zeid

4. Carlos Lee - LF
Traded - July 4, 2012 to Miami for Matt Dominguez and Rob Rasmussen

5. Jeff Keppinger - 2B
Traded - July 19, 2011 to San Francisco for Jason Stoffel and Henry Sosa

6. Brett Wallace - 1B
Currently at Triple-A Oklahoma City

7. Chris Johnson - 3B
Traded - July 29, 2012 to Arizona for Bobby Borchering and Marc Krauss

8. Robinson Cancel - C
Granted free agency - October 3, 2011

9. Jordan Lyles - P

Pitching Staff in that game?

Sergio Escalona (faced one batter in the 8th)
Currently at Double-A Corpus Christi

Wilton Lopez (faced four batters in the 8th)
Traded - December 4, 2012 to Colorado for Alex Gillingham and Alex White

Fernando Rodriguez (got the last out of the 8th inning)
Traded - February 4, 2013 to Oakland with Jed Lowrie for Max Stassi, Chris Carter, and Brad Peacock

Mark Melancon (pitched a perfect 9th inning)
Traded - December 14, 2011 to Boston for Jed Lowrie and Kyle Weiland

You can even look at the bench players and see a similar trend:

Jason Michaels (Pinch-runner/LF)
Granted free agency - October 30, 2011. Currently in the Nationals' organization.

Matt Downs (PH)
Granted free agency - November 1, 2012. Currently in the Marlins' organization.

J.R. Towles (C)
Granted free agency - November 2, 2011. Currently in the Dodgers' organization.

Angel Sanchez (PH)
Granted free agency - October 4, 2012. Currently in the White Sox' organization.

In total, 17 players got into this game against the Cubs. Three of them are still with the Astros - only one with the ML team. Of the 14 players who have departed, five of them left via free agency, while the other nine were traded for a total of 22 players - three of whom (Clemens, Dominguez, Carter) are on the 25-Man roster, and eight of whom are on the 40-Man roster.

*As a caveat: Carlos Pena was the Cubs' starting 1B that day. I ignored him.