Angels send Conger to Astros for Tropeano, Perez

The Angels traded backup catcher Hank Conger to the Astros in exchange for young right-hander Nick Tropeano and Minor League catcher Carlos Perez, clearing up some payroll space and, most importantly, acquiring some much-desired cost-controlled starting pitching.

Tropeano, 24, posted a 3.03 ERA, a 3.64 strikeout-to-walk ratio and a 0.99 WHIP in 124 2/3 innings while serving mostly as a starter in the Astros’ Triple-A affiliate. Originally a fifth-round Draft pick by the Astros in 2011, Tropeano made four starts for the Astros this past season – 11 earned runs in 21 2/3 innings – and owns a 3.26 ERA in his four-year Minor League career.

Tropeano is listed at 6-foot-4 and will be under club control for six full seasons. The Angels went into the offseason targeting cost-controlled starting pitching that was ready to contribute in the Majors, and though Tropeano doesn’t necessarily boast a power arm, he can be an option for the back end of their rotation.

Conger, a product of Huntington Beach, was taken by the Angels with the 25th overall selection of the 2006 First-Year Player Draft and established himself as a backup and occasional platoon option with Chris Iannetta these last two seasons, posting a .235/.301/.364 slash line in 172 games from 2013-14.

Conger was set to make a little more than $1 million in his first year of arbitration.

Perez, a 24-year-old who has yet to make his Major League debut, was acquired from the Blue Jays in the 10-player deal that sent J.A. Happ to Toronto in July 2012. Perez was originally signed out of Venezuela, has good defensive tools and is a career .277/.359/.393 hitter in the Minor Leagues.


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