HOUSTON (AP) — Dexter Fowler is looking forward to a new beginning with the rebuilding Houston Astros while also dealing with what he calls a bittersweet ending to his time with the Colorado Rockies.
Astros acquired the outfielder and a player to be named from the Rockies on Tuesday for outfielder Brandon Barnes and right-hander Jordan Lyles.
Drafted by Colorado in 2004, Fowler has spent his entire career with the Rockies. He joins a team that has posted three straight 100-plus loss seasons, including a franchise-record 111 losses in 2013 in its first year in the American League.
"There are definitely challenges, but at the same time you just got to look at the positives," Fowler said. "And the positive is that there are young guys here and they're eager to win and they're eager to put their (effort) into the game ... anything I can do to help, I'm just going to go out and play hard every day and I'm sure we'll definitely see the tides turn."
The speedy 27-year-old Fowler hit .263 with 18 doubles, 42 RBIs and 19 stolen bases in 119 games last season. Fowler, a switch-hitter who primarily plays center field, hit .300 in 2012.
"One of our goals this offseason was to bring in an outfielder who can spark our offense," Houston general manager Jeff Luhnow said. "Dexter is an exciting player who can help with the bat, with his legs, and with his glove."
Fowler missed a big chunk of the last month of the season with an injured left knee, but said Tuesday that the problem was behind him.
"I'm awesome," he said. "I'm healthy and ready to go."
Fowler hasn't had any extended conversations with Luhnow, but expects to play center field for the Astros next season and called the position "home." He isn't worried about navigating Tal's Hill in center field at Minute Maid Park.
"I played in the biggest yard in major league baseball, so I don't think anything is as challenging as Coors is," he said.