Rays Deal Iwamura To Pirates For Chavez

6:15pm: The deal is official, as per a press release by the Pirates. The deal is Chavez for Iwamura straight-up.

4:34pm: ESPN's Buster Olney tells us the Rays will receive reliever Jesse Chavez in return.  Chavez, 26, posted a 4.01 ERA in 67.3 innings this year as a rookie, with a 6.3 K/9 and 2.9 BB/9.  He throws hard – his average fastball was 94.5 mph.  Chavez is under team control through 2014.

Kovacevic believes the Pirates "will probably get another player in the Iwamura deal."  He notes that Iwamura would be the Pirates' highest-paid player.

3:35pm: Topkin says Iwamura is headed to the Pirates, and the deal will be announced tonight.  MLB.com's Jenifer Langosch does not believe the Bucs will surrender an established player.  I'm a bit surprised they're willing to take Iwamura on at that salary, not that he's bad value.

3:04pm: Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette tweets that he's hearing the Pirates are part of the Iwamura trade talks.  MLB.com's Joe Frisaro believes the Marlins would have interest, but not if they had to assume Iwamura's entire contract.

2:41pm: Roger Mooney of the Bradenton Herald believes Iwamura is headed to an NL club.

12:45pm: Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times hears that the Rays are on the verge of trading Akinori Iwamura. Topkin's source, who's not with the Rays, says the team close to acquiring Iwamura is not the Dodgers or Cubs.

The Rays have until one day after the end of the World Series to pick up Iwamura's $4.85MM option or buy him out for $550K. The Rays don't need Iwamura thanks to Ben Zobrist's emergence, but it's not surprising that other teams have interest in the Japanese infielder. The 30-year-old has a career line of .281/.354/.393 and he plays a solid second base, according to UZR/150.


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