Twins send reliever Ryan Pressly to Astros for prospects

The Houston Astros have won the bidding for Minnesota Twins right-hander Ryan Pressly, one of the hottest bullpen commodities on the trade market.

The Astros will send two prospects -- right-hander Jorge Alcala and center fielder Gilberto Celestino -- to Minnesota for the right-handed Pressly, the teams announced Friday.

Pressly was 1-1 with a 3.40 ERA (47 2/3 innings pitched, 18 earned runs), 19 walks and 69 strikeouts for the Twins this season. He has made 51 appearances, tied for the second most in baseball. He is a bargain, too, making just $1.6 million this season and under team control through 2019.

Houston manager A.J. Hinch said it was too early for him to say how Pressly would be used. But he raved about his skills.

"He can bring a lot, he has a good arm and has had success in the 'pen," Houston manager A.J. Hinch said. "I don't know him but I know his track record, so he's somebody we looked at pretty hard and you know he fits how we like to pitch and he fits in a lot of different roles for us."

Pressly, who is from Dallas, said the trade was bittersweet.

"It's tough. A lot of friends here, a lot of great guys in this clubhouse,'' he said. "It's tough to say goodbye to everybody, but it's a business, I get it. So I get to go back home, that's the good part. I'm excited to go down there and help that team win, so I'm pretty excited.''

To make room for Pressly on the roster, the Astros optioned reliever Cionel Perez to Triple-A.

The Twins acquired Pressly in the Rule 5 draft in 2013 from the Boston Red Sox. He has appeared in 281 games for Minnesota, going 17-16 with a 3.75 ERA (317 IP, 132 ER), 108 walks and 282 strikeouts.

The Twins have been busy sellers. Earlier Friday, they sent switch-hitting infielder Eduardo Escobar to the Arizona Diamondbacks for minor league right-hander Jhoan Duran and outfielders Gabriel Maciel and Ernie De La Trinidad.

Alcala, 22, was Houston's 10th-ranked prospect. He signed with the Astros in 2015 from Bajos de Haina, Dominican Republic. The right-hander went 3-7 with a 3.29 ERA (79 1/3 IP, 29 ER), 35 walks, 82 strikeouts and three saves in 19 games (12 starts) between high-A Buies Creek and Double-A Corpus Christi.

Celestino, 19, ranked 15th in Houston's system, was signed in 2016 out of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The outfielder has played 36 games between Single-A Tri City and Double-A Corpus Christi, combining to hit .299 (40-for-134) with eight doubles, four home runs, 21 RBIs and 14 stolen bases in 36 games.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.