The Houston Astros acquired right-hander David Paulino and outfielder Danry Vasquez from the Detroit Tigers at the trade deadline in 2013 for a two-month rental of reliever Jose Veras. At the time Vasquez was a rising prospect for the Tigers and the centerpiece of the deal. Paulino was nothing more than a rail-thin project to sweeten the pot.
A lot has changed since then: Paulino has bulked up, his fastball has gained velocity and the breaking ball has taken a step forward developmentally. Across three levels of A-ball this season, the 21-year-old boasts an impressive 72:19 strikeout-to-walk ratio over 67.1 innings. Here are my notes from seeing Paulino in extended spring training this year.