Morning Marquee: Houston Astros land Scott Kazmir; Ramirez going home

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It’s that time of the year again when general managers either prepare themselves to trade away top players in order to rebuild for next season, or acquire star-studded talent to help them complete their postseason push.

While the Theo Epstein and the Chicago Cubs remain silent, the Houston Astros were able to find themselves another start to help compliment both Dallas Keuchel and Lance McCullers. Jeff Luhnow dealt both catcher Jacob Nottingham and pitcher Daniel Mengden to Billy Beane and the Oakland Athletics for the veteran southpaw.

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In case you missed it, Co-editor Nicholas Blazek had a list of five pitchers the Cubs should target prior to the deadline and Kazmir, of course, was on that list. You can view that post by clicking here.

Despite missing out on Kazmir, there’s a possibility that Chicago could be in the mix to acquire another Athletic in Ben Zobrist. Zobrist was with Joe Maddon in Tampa Bay along with Detroit Tigers pitcher, David Price.

With Detroit missing slugger Miguel Cabrera, there’s a slight chance that they could unload guys such as Price and outfielder Yoenis Cespedes before the end of the month.

Both the Tigers and Price were unable to come to an agreement on a contract extension earlier on in the year, which could play a factor in the decision of whether or not to trade him. Some believe if he is traded to a team other than the Cubs, he could be targeted by Epstein and Jed Hoyer during the off-season and signed to another big deal.

I’m sure it won’t be as big as the one Jon Lester signed, but relatively similar or at least good enough to land his services. This team definitely needs another arm to help balance out the workload within this starting rotation as they continue to push towards either the division crown or Wild Card race.

Some may expect them to give up on the St. Louis Cardinals and let the Pirates figure that one out while putting themselves in a one-game playoff at the end of the year.

Speaking of the Pirates, they made a splash of their own when they traded for Aramis Ramirez from the Milwaukee Brewers. Ramirez was dealt by the Bucs 12-years ago on July 22 to the Cubs and stayed with the organization until after the 2011 campaign when he opted to decline his option.

Pittsburgh was hit with injuries to Josh Harrison and Jordy Mercer – two men who are not expected to return until September.

Here’s more around from around the league:

Former Cub’ Aramis Ramirez heading to Pittsburgh in deal with the Brewers‘ – Cubbies Crib

Houston Astros acquire Scott Kazmir from Oakland A’s‘ – Climbing Tal’s Hill

July 23, 2014: Colorado Rockies 6, Washington Nationals 4‘ – Rox Pile

Red Sox extend losing skid in 5-4 heartbreaker‘ – BoSox Injection

Angels win series over Twins, prepare for Rangers, Hamilton‘ – Halo Hangout 

Next: Tigers' Price tempting, but not worth it

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