Jeff Keppinger Traded to Giants

The Astros sent second baseman Jeff Keppinger to the Giants last evening for a pair of minor league pitchers.

San Francisco was known to be looking to bolster its lineup this deadline, as the club sits near the bottom of the league in several offensive categories.

The Giants have been decimated by injuries this season, and have two second baseman on the disabled list currently in Freddy Sanchez and Bill Hall which prompted the Keppinger deal.

The 30 year old provides San Francisco with a consistent bat as well as defensive flexibility.  Keppinger has produced a line of .307/.320/.436 with 13 extra base hits and 20 RBI’s over his 43 games played for the Astros this season.  He also has shown the ability to play all over the infield and even suit up in the outfield if needed over his career.

Keppinger is very excited to be heading west and to finally join a contending team.

“I get to go to a team that’s in contention,” he said. “This will be the first time I’ve ever actually been on a team that’s been in first place or even with a winning record. It’s definitely exciting and that’s what you want when you play this game.”

In return for their second baseman, Houston received a pair of arms, Henry Sosa and Jason Stoffel.

Stoffel, who was originally drafted by the Giants, has closed games for the Astros’ Double-A squad this season.  Over his 32 appearances, the right hander has maintained an ERA of 3.98 with 13 saves in 31.2 innings.

For his career Stoffel has a 3.78 earned run average over 102.1 innings of relief.  Over that span he’s posted a solid SO/9 ratio of 10.2.

Astros’ GM Ed Wade said that he believes Sosa could be a part of Houston’s rotation as soon as next season.  The 25 year old has pitched for the Giants’ Double and Triple-A teams this season.  He’s had far more success at the lower level, where his ERA is 2.68 over 8 appearances and 6 starts.

Houston said it was ‘difficult’ to part with Keppinger, but the club was making the move from an area of relative depth.  In completing the trade, the Astros cleared room for minor league second baseman Jose Altuve.

Altuve has flown through Houston’s system as he began the year playing High-A ball.  Altuve was insane during his 52 games in Single-A, posting an OPS of 1.057 with 25 extra base hits, 34 RBI’s, 38 runs scored and 19 stolen bases.

The 21 year old’s performance was noticed by the club and earned him a promotion as Houston wanted to see if he could keep up the pace at the next level.  Altuve has been nearly as impressive in Double-A, putting up a line of .361/.388/.569 in 35 games.

Astros’ manager Brad Mills indicated that Altuve will see a lot of playing time at second so the team is able to see what he could do at the major league level.

For more on the Astros and Giants, be sure to check out Climbing Tal’s Hill and Frisco Fastball.

Tags: Bill Hall Freddy Sanchez Henry Sosa Houston Astros Jason Stoffel Jeff Keppinger Jose Altuve San Francisco Giants

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