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Trades shake up Astros' Minor League system

Trades shake up Astros' Minor League system

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas -- Another day, another new face for Hooks manager Keith Bodie.

The flurry of trades the Astros have made in the last month have infused the Minor League system with even more bodies, some of whom have found their way to Double-A Corpus Christi. Right-hander Asher Wojciechowski, acquired from Toronto in a 10-player trade, joined the Hooks on Saturday, and will make his first start Tuesday at San Antonio.

Another right-hander, Matt Heidenreich, met the Hooks on Sunday after being acquired from the White Sox in a trade for Brett Myers. The team also has a pair of new catchers in Ben Heath and Rene Garcia, both up from Class A Lancaster.

"Regardless of the changes, they've played cohesive enough to really do an amazing job," said Bodie, whose team entered play Monday in first place in the Texas League's South Division at 20-9.

Wojciechowski, 23, was Toronto's first selection in the compensation round of the 2010 Draft. He was 7-3 with a 3.57 ERA in 18 starts at Class A Dunedin, going 5-1 with a 1.49 ERA in his last seven starts.

Wojciechowski, a power pitcher who likes to attack hitters, said landing with the rebuilding Astros will give him more opportunity.

"I kind of get that feeling right now, looking at all the movement they're doing," he said. "Seeing what's going on, I definitely feel like this is a great opportunity and have a great chance to do something here."

Another newcomer to the rotation is left-hander Rob Rasmussen, who came to Houston from the Marlins in the July 4 deal for Carlos Lee. Rasmussen is 1-1 with a 7.07 ERA in three starts in his first Double-A experience. He joined the Hooks from Jupiter of the Florida State League.

"He's getting acclimated to a new level," Bodie said. "It's his first time in Double-A, and [Friday] night he made some nice adjustments from his previous outing. We're happy to have him, a left-hander with quality stuff. He's got four quality pitches, and another thing with him is he's still young and command is a big issue. When he's down, he's very effective."

Heidenreich was 9-4 with a 3.95 ERA in 18 combined starts at Class A Winston-Salem and Double-A Birmingham with two complete games and a shutout. The White Sox selected the 21-year-old in the fourth-round of the 2009 Draft and he's gone 25-17 in four minor league seasons, with a 3.87 ERA in 75 appearances (56 starts).