Astros take huge risks in Pence deal 

July, 29, 2011

Editor's Note: This analysis was assigned before the Phillies made it clear Pence would play right field for the time being, not left. It's been updated.

In a huge deal completed Friday night, the Philadelphia Phillies get Hunter Pence from the Houston Astros for a quartet of prospects. If and when he ends up in left field, Pence will be an upgrade over Raul Ibanez, and Philly fans can take heart in the fact that Pence is more than just a rental for 2011. The Astros, however, also get a ton of potential long-term value. However, both of the major prospects coming over in this deal carry substantial risk of not just failing to reach their ceilings, but failing to contribute in a significant way in the majors. That is, they are high-risk, high-reward prospects.

Keith Law

ESPN Senior Writer