Former Blue Jays and Cardinals center fielder Colby Rasmus has signed with the Astros on a one-year deal. Rasmus could make more than $4 million in Houston, where he is projected to start in center despite the young team's growing stable of talented outfielders.
Since he's just 28 years old, the Rasmus move appears to be a savvy low-risk, high-upside acquisition like the one the Mets made to bring in Chris Young last winter. In that move, the Mets assumed the low risk and the Yankees saw the high upside, but Houston brass will look for more with Rasmus.
He's had trouble staying on the field for the past two seasons (222 major league games played), but in 2013 Rasmus was outstanding at the plate and in the field for Toronto. In 458 plate appearances, he batted .276/.338/.501 with plus defense for 4.8 fWAR.
2014 wasn't as fun for Rasmus, as his BABIP returned to Earth and his strikeout rate peaked at 33 percent. On the other hand, he's still young and has very good power for a center fielder. It will be interesting to see how the former St. Louis star prospect fares in Houston.