HOUSTON, TX - The Houston Astros have acquired left-handed pitcher Scott Kazmir from the Oakland Athletics in exchange for two minor leaguers, right-handed pitcher Daniel Mengden and catcher Jacob Nottingham. The announcement was made by Astros General Manager Jeff Luhnow.
Kazmir, 31, who will join the club in Kansas City tomorrow, has gone 5-5 with a 2.38 ERA (29ER/109.2IP) in 18 starts for the A's this season. Among American League pitchers, Kazmir ranks fourth in opponent batting average (.213) and fifth in ERA. He has made one start since the All-Star Break, tossing 8.1 innings, and allowing just one run on five hits on Saturday vs. Minnesota. On the season, Kazmir has allowed just three earned runs or fewer in 17 of his 18 starts.
"Scott Kazmir is one of the best pitchers in the American League and strengthens our rotation," said Luhnow. "His addition gives the Astros a better chance of reaching and succeeding in the postseason. It has been a while since the Astros have been relevant late in the summer and winning now is a priority."
A native of Houston and a resident of nearby Cypress, Kazmir attended Cy Falls High School before being drafted by the Mets in the first round (15th overall pick) of the 2002 draft. He is an 11-year Major League veteran and a three-time All-Star (2006, 2008, 2014). Kazmir owns a career 96-84 record with a 3.95 ERA (649ER/1480IP) while pitching for Tampa Bay (2004-09), Los Angeles-AL (2009-11), Cleveland (2013) and Oakland (2014-15).
Most recently, Mengden and Nottingham had been playing for Class A Advanced Lancaster after each began the 2015 season at Class A Quad Cities. Mengden was originally a fourth-round selection in the 2014 draft, while Nottingham was originally taken in the sixth round of the 2013 draft.
With the addition of Kazmir, the Astros 40-man roster is now at 39.