5. Houston Astros
The Astros began the season at 15-24, but after a series victory over the White Sox in Chicago in May, Houston has propelled itself back into contention. The Astros are 3.5 games behind the Texas Rangers in the American League West division. The Astros are backed by a strong pitching rotation as they’re ranked ninth in MLB with a 4.19 ERA.
The bullpen of the Astros is strong, but with Tony Sipp struggling this season Houston could use a left-handed relief pitcher for the second half. Sipp, the Astros only left-handed relief pitcher has a 4.91 ERA this season in 38 appearances. The veteran relief pitcher couldn’t record an out in his last appearance against the Oakland Atheltics after allowing a hit and walking a batter. The Astros will certainly need another left-handed relief pitcher and this would be a good landing spot for Duke.
Although Duke allowed a home run in Wednesday’s game against the Mariners, has been solid for the White Sox this season out of the bullpen. Duke has a 2.79 ERA in 33.1 innings pitched this season and left-handed batters are hitting .279 against him. While this isn’t great, its better than the .321 average for left-handed batters against Sipp this season. Duke singed a three-year $15 million contract during the 2014 offseason, and with one year left on his contract it would behoove the White Sox to relieve themselves of getting a decent return in a trade for Duke.