Changing Their Ways

After refusing to exceed MLB's slotting guidelines and spending just $1.6 million on their entire 2007 draft, the Astros have reversed course. Houston went over slot to sign a pair of Texas high school pitchers in late July and early August, giving supplemental third-rounder Ross Seaton $700,000 and eighth-rounder Brad Dydalewicz $425,000. Last year, Houston surrendered its first- and second-round choices as free-agent compensation and failed to sign its third- , fourth- and eight-rounders, a huge blow to a farm system already in decline. New general manager Ed Wade restructured the scouting department after coming aboard last September, hiring former Brewers crosschecker Bobby Heck as scouting director.

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