According to Jeff Passan, a new team has entered the Gerrit Cole trade talks, which have been fairly quiet recently. Passan says that the Houston Astros and Pittsburgh Pirates have talked about a possible deal.
Sources: The Houston Astros have engaged with the Pittsburgh Pirates on trade talks for starter Gerrit Cole. One name bandied about as a return: outfielder Derek Fisher. For a trade to happen, Pirates almost certainly would need Kyle Tucker or Forrest Whitley as a centerpiece.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 8, 2018
As the tweet from Passan says, outfielder Derek Fisher is a name that has been mentioned, although it doesn’t say exactly who mentioned it, so it just appears to be speculation at this point. Passan feels that he wouldn’t be enough to be a centerpiece in any deal. The 24-year-old Fisher made his big league debut in 2017, hitting .212/.307/.356 in 53 games.
To add on to this rumor, Jim Crane, who owns the Astros, told media today that they are actively pursuing a top-end starting pitcher and that could come from a trade or a free agent signing. As usual, stay tuned for any possible updates.
Astros owner Jim Crane: Astros are “actively pursuing a high end starter.” pic.twitter.com/plApE8uPkW
— Alyson Footer (@alysonfooter) January 8, 2018
UPDATE 4:50 PM: Jon Morosi confirms the rumors and adds some details…
#Astros and #Pirates have discussed Gerrit Cole in trade talks, sources confirm @JeffPassan report. Cole has one of the most closely watched salary arbitration cases in @MLB, with deadline to exchange figures on Friday. @MLBNetwork
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) January 8, 2018
UPDATE: Tuesday 1:00 PM: For what it’s worth, the NY Daily News believes that Cole going to the Yankees is inevitable, despite Astros showing interest. Here’s the link, which includes the reasoning behind that thought.