The Houston Astros' have reached an agreement with the Pittsburgh Pirates on a trade for right-hander Gerrit Cole, MLB Network's Jon Morosi reported Wednesday, citing sources. He is 59-42 with a 3.50 ERA in 127 career starts. Cole did top 200 innings for the second time in 2017 and also saw his strikeout numbers tick back up close to one per inning. However, the Pirates may not have been able to re-sign him when he eventually hit free agency, so they ensured they landed something in return for the ace. It's less clear how badly the Pirates need outfield prospects given the presence of Austin Meadows, Starling Marte and Gregory Polanco.
The Astros entered this offseason coming off a World Series championship but owner Jim Crane said the team was actively searching for another member of its rotation.