The Angels announced today that they have acquired shortstop Brendan Ryan from the Nationals in exchange for cash considerations or a player to be named later. He’ll join the Angels tonight and give them a defense-oriented replacement for the injured Andrelton Simmons, who requires surgery to repair a torn ligament in his thumb and is slated to miss the next six to eight weeks. Right-hander Garrett Richards, who is set to undergo Tommy John surgery, was moved to the 60-day DL to make room for Ryan on the 40-man roster.
Ryan, 34, has spent most of the past three seasons with the Yankees, hitting a combined .201/.244/.271 in a limited sample of 289 plate appearances. (Notably, the trade reunites him with former Yankees assistant GM Billy Eppler, who is now the GM for the Halos.) Ryan has never been much of a threat with the bat, but like Simmons, he’s a very highly regarded defender at shortstop and should at the very least provide the Halos with quality glovework during Simmons’ prolonged absence. Ryan began the season with the Nationals’ Triple-A affiliate, where he was batting .263/.305/.382 with one home run in 83 trips to the plate.
This past offseason, Ryan exercised a $1MM player option with the Yankees but found himself included with Adam Warren in the trade that sent Starlin Castro from the Cubs to the Yankees. Chicago would ultimately release Ryan, who inked a minors pact with the Nationals and (as MASNsports.com’s Mark Zuckerman tweets) nearly made the Major League roster with a fine spring showing. Ryan is a career .234/.295/.315 hitter in 2872 Major League plate appearances with the Cardinals, Mariners and Yankees. He’s logged nearly 5700 innings at shortstop in the Majors and drawn a +99 mark from Defensive Runs Saved. Ultimate Zone Rating, meanwhile, pegs Ryan at +11 runs per 150 games played.
MLB.com’s Alden Gonzalez first reported that the Angels had acquired Ryan (Twitter link).