Leading up to the non-waiver trade deadline, the Astros completed a trade for Blue Jays closer Roberto Osuna. The move was controversial because Osuna at the time was still serving a 75-game suspension under Major League Baseball's domestic violence policy. On Sunday, the Astros activated Osuna from the restricted list and added him to the active roster.
At the time of the trade, Astros GM Jeff Luhnow released an explanatory statement, and on Sunday the team once again made a statement regarding Osuna and his alleged incident of domestic violence, for which he has a scheduled Sept. 5 court date in Canada. Here is that statement in full:
On August 4th, Roberto Osuna willfully and successfully completed his MLB domestic violence program requirements. Because of the ongoing legal proceedings, very little can be said about the incident itself or the case involving Roberto.
Our decision to acquire Roberto was based on the entirety of information that we gathered during our extensive evaluation. That included as much information as we could gather about the specific incident and the charges that were filed but it also included as much information as we could gather about his actions before and after the incident, as well as his personal reputation among his former teammates and coaches. The information regarding this specific incident weighed heavily on our decision but when evaluating the entirety of the information, we felt that Roberto deserved a second chance.
We are now focused on ensuring that Roberto makes a positive impact off the field while he is a member of the Houston Astros. We are providing Roberto with the benefit of a great clubhouse and organization as a supportive environment for this fresh start. We welcome being held accountable for all of our personnel decisions. Time will tell which ones were right and wrong. We believe that Roberto will not let us down. If there is any type of issue in the future, we will take immediate and decisive action – it will not be tolerated.
This was an extremely difficult decision for our organization. We understood that it would cause significant debate. We are strong believers in protecting the rights of victims and remain committed to having a positive impact on our community. We will use this decision to significantly increase our support, raise awareness, and influence change regarding the issues of domestic violence and abuse of any kind. We have engaged with Houston Area Women's Center, Texas Council on Family Violence, and National Network to End Domestic Violence and look forward to working with them. We passionately maintain our commitment to our fans and the city of Houston. We have always been and will continue to be strong corporate citizens for our community.
Osuna did not pitch in the Astros' Sunday loss to the Dodgers. Strictly on a baseball level, Osuna (career ERA+ of 150) could be an important part of the Astros' bullpen down the stretch and in the postseason. His Astros tenure, though, will be about much more than just baseball. As the Houston Chronicle recently noted, Osuna could be facing a maximum of six months' imprisonment. Osuna's attorney has said he hopes for a resolution to his case leading up to or shortly after that Sept. 5 court date in Ontario.