View single post by lobo316
 Posted: Fri Nov 4th, 2016 05:03 pm
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Joined: Sun Oct 14th, 2007
Location: Raptorville
Posts: 44651
The Houston Astros have already started shaping their roster for the 2017 campaign, claiming veteran outfielder Nori Aoki off waivers from the Seattle Mariners on Thursday.

Aoki, who signed a one-year, $6-million deal with the Mariners last winter that included a mutual option for 2017, enjoyed a fairly productive season in 2016 despite enduring two stints with the club's Triple-A affiliate. In 118 games with Seattle, the 34-year-old hit .283/.349/.388 with four homers and 1.2 WAR, starting 88 contests in left field and another 14 in center.

Since making his MLB debut in 2012 following an eight-year stint with the Yakult Swallows of Nippon Professional Baseball, Aoki has hit .286/.353/.387 with 88 stolen bases and 8.6 WAR in 649 games between the Mariners, San Francisco Giants, Kansas City Royals, and Milwaukee Brewers.

With Colby Rasmus unlikely to return to Houston next season, Aoki could see regular time in left field in 2016, or provide depth behind George Springer, Jake Marisnick, and Preston Tucker.

"He's a left-handed hitter with a good contact rate, good plate discipline and a low strikeout rate and plays multiple positions," Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow told Jake Kaplan of the Houston Chronicle.

"We've got a lot of power guys but they do tend to strike out some, so getting somebody that is a different look in the lineup, both from the different side and also a different style, I think could really lengthen our lineup and give (manager) A.J. (Hinch) a lot of options."