After days of rumors and numerous reports from countless sources, the Astros have traded Hunter Pence to the Phillies for prospects Jarred Cosart, Jonathan Singleton, Josh Zeid and a player to be named later.
Philadelphia has been looking for a middle of the order bat to provide a boost to their lackluster offense. The Phillies were one of the finalists in the Carlos Beltran sweepstakes and also showed interest in Carlos Quentin before coming to an agreement for Pence.
On the year Pence has been solid for the Astros, hitting at a clip of .308/.356/.471 with 40 extra base hits and 62 RBI’s. The two time All-Star has a career OPS of .818 and has averaged 23 homers a year since getting the call in 2007.
Philadelphia was able to hold on to major league pieces Vance Worley and Domonic Brown, but instead had to delve into its minors to pay for the acquisition of Pence. In return for the 28 year old, Houston received two of the Phillies top 4 prospects in Cosart and Singleton plus another that many considered to be in their top 15 in Zeid.
Entering 2011, Singleton was regarded as the Phillies second best prospect behind only Brown. He’s only 19 but is already with Philadelphia’s High-A club. Singleton was drafted as a first baseman, but has also seen significant time in the outfield this season. In his 92 games, Singleton has posted a line of .282/.386/.411 with 9 home runs 47 RBI’s and 56 walks.
Cosart was the Phils best pitching prospect as well as Singleton’s teammate in High-A. The 21 year old was 9-8 on the year with an ERA of 3.92 and 1.306 WHIP.
The final known player at this point is the 24 year old Zeid. Entering 2011, the right hander had maintained an earned run average of 2.94 over his first two seasons in the minors. Zeid’s struggled a bit this year (5.65 ERA) making the transition to Double-A, where he’s appeared in 21 games, starting 11 of them.
With Pence off the market, the corner outfield bats remaining, Ryan Ludwick and Josh Willingham, are mostly considered to be next tier talent. However, there could be one more true impact player available if the White Sox decide to part with Quentin.