MLB trade grades: Who won the Astros-Red Sox Christian Vazquez deal?

Boston Red Sox, Houston Astros, MLB Trade Rumors

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The Houston Astros continued their strong Monday by acquiring catcher Christian Vazquez from the Boston Red Sox. But who won the trade?

On the day before the MLB trade deadline, the New York Yankees and Houston Astros were conducting business. The Yankees were able to acquire Oakland Athletics starting pitcher Frankie Montas and reliever Lou Trivino in exchange for four players. The Astros were able to get Baltimore Orioles first baseman Trey Mancini. But Houston was not done yet.

According to ESPN MLB insider Jeff Passan, the Astros were finalizing a trade with the Boston Red Sox for catcher Christian Vazquez. USA Today’s Bob Nightengale later tweeted out that Houston was sending their No. 28 and 29 prospects, utility man Enmauel Valdez and outfielder Wilyer Abreu, respectively.

So, who wins this trade between the two teams that just met in the ALCS last year?

Astros trade grade

The Astros are building to what feels like an inevitability — a postseason series against the Yankees. They were able to get Mancini, who was one of the top first basemen available ahead of the deadline. Now, they get Vazquez, who was one of the top catchers available behind Willson Contreras of the Chicago Cubs. Oh, and he was obviously from another AL East team in the Red Sox.

This season, Vazquez is having one of his better seasons standing in the batter’s box. Through 84 games entering Aug. 1, Vazquez is slashing .282/.327/.432 while recording eight home runs, 42 RBI, and 83 hits.

Make no mistake about it, getting one of the top catchers available is a win for the Astros. What’s even better is that he has a ton of experience calling games against the Yankees.

Grade: B+

Red Sox trade grade

Trading away your starting catcher is never ideal. But in Boston’s case, Vazquez was set to become an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season. So, the Red Sox decided to get some return for him. They received Houston’s No. 28 and 29 prospects.

Valdez started off the season in Double-A, slashing .357/.463/.649 while recording 11 home runs, 45 RBI, and 60 hits. He was promoted to Triple-A, and he was still raking at the plate, recording a .296 batting average, a .906 OPS, 10 home runs, 32 RBI, and 47 hits.

Abreau spent the entirety of the 2022 season with Double-A, slashing .249/.399/.459 while posting 15 home runs, 54 RBI, 81 runs scored, and 82 hits.

The Red Sox appear to be receiving some quality prospects in exchange for a catcher who was set to become a free agent this winter.

Grade: C+

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