The Rockies reportedly received offers for All-Star shortstop Trevor Story from the Yankees, Brewers, White Sox, and Rays prior to Friday’s trade deadline, per Jon Heyman of the MLB Network (via Twitter). The Rockies have been criticized for their failure to move Story, given that they are all but assured to lose him as a free agent after the season. They will get a draft pick when he departs, and their front office did not deem any of the offers received as appreciably better than that draft pick will be.
This year’s trade season did not disappoint. After a wild couple of days, we’re gonna do our best to recap the action from one of the busiest trade deadlines in recent memory. Let’s start with the headlines coming out of the Senior Circuit this month…
The Champs Are Still The Champs: This phrase, in many ways, could serve as an ironic headline for this year’s trade deadline, as we saw the dismantling of a couple of former championship teams. The reigning champ, however, was not one of them. The Dodgers reasserted themselves as the team to beat in the National League by making the splashiest move of the deadline in acquiring Max Scherzer and Trea Turner from the Nationals.
The Dodgers stepped up, and now they have perhaps the most intimidating starter of his generation slotted into a rotation with Clayton Kershaw, probably the best pitcher of his generation, along with young stud Walker Buehler. It’s an amazing collection of talent for a single team.
That said, the Turner acquisition might be even more impactful, as he’s under team control through next season. Turner and Mookie Betts as a 1-2 punch in the lineup are devastating. Interestingly, the Dodgers also got Corey Seager back from the injured list today, and it remains to be seen how the Dodgers will deploy their pair of All-Star shortstops (to say nothing of Gavin Lux and Chris Taylor). The Dodgers have options now and for the future. Remember, Seager is a free agent after the season. They can still bring back their World Series MVP at the right price point, but they won’t be pressured to now that they have Turner in the fold.
The Padres Don’t Land Mad Max: The trade deadline madness really began on Thursday night when it was announced that the Padres and Nats had agreed on the players involved in a Scherzer deal. That didn’t sit well with the Dodgers, who swooped in to remind the Padres of who still runs the West. The Padres were expected to turn their attention to Jose Berrios, but they weren’t able to get him either.
At the end of the day, the Padres didn’t get Scherzer, Berrios, Joey Gallo, or any other of the big names. They did add Adam Frazier, a versatile defender and good contact hitter, along with Daniel Hudson, who is a legitimate get for the bullpen, and Jake Marisnick, who compliments their centerfield options nicely, even if he’s not much more than a depth piece. It was a less impactful deadline than expected, but what’s worse: Fernando Tatis Jr. promptly reaggravated his shoulder injury. Add it all up, and the swing from potentially acquiring Scherzer to potentially losing Tatis is enough to give any Padres fan whiplash.
Giants Add Bryant: The Padres took a big swing and missed, the Dodgers took their swing and connected, and sure to form, the Giants played the deadline slow and steady. Does the tortoise win again? Time will tell, but the Giants did ultimately nab a former MVP in Kris Bryant without giving up a top prospect. Bryant fits their profile like a glove, and he’ll be able to fill in at third until Evan Longoria returns and then move to the outfield.
Remember: The Giants have a three-game head start on LA and a five-game lead on the Padres. Adding Bryant has game-changing potential, while Tony Watson was a solid, low-key add to the pen. The Dodgers are scary, but if the Giants keep playing their game, LA may find themselves in the wild card game anyway.
Cubs Collapse, Dismantle 2016 World Series Champs: In a vacuum, the Cubs had a pretty good deadline. They added a number of buzzy, interesting young players like Nick Madrigal, Pete Crow-Armstrong, and Alexander Canario. But it came at a cost. After years of rumors, Bryant, Anthony Rizzo, and Javier Baez were finally shipped out of town, along with Craig Kimbrel, Andrew Chafin, Ryan Tepera, Marisnick, and Trevor Williams. New players — and new narratives — are long overdue in Chicago, and the next chapter awaits.
Nationals Collapse, Dismantle 2019 World Series Champs: It’s appropriate that the Cubs are in DC to play the Nats this weekend, because really, the two clubs are mirror images of one another, right down to their interconnecting pieces like Kyle Schwarber and Jon Lester. Both teams were trying to contend on the legs of recent title teams, both teams had disastrous months of July, and both clubs desperately needed an influx of young talent. Both teams got it on Friday.
The Nats farm system was even more barren than Chicago’s and their need to restock even direr given the presence of young superstud Juan Soto. So Washington said their fare-thee-wells to Scherzer, Turner, Hudson, and Yan Gomes from the title team, plus recent additions Lester, Schwarber, Brad Hand, and Josh Harrison. GM Mike Rizzo does not sell off pieces willy nilly, but in doing so, they got some high-end, near-ready pieces as they look to quickly rebuild a contender in context around Soto before the Scott Boras client reaches free agency after the 2024 season.
Brewers Take Their Place Atop The NL Central: Milwaukee made their big acquisition back in May, and Willy Adames has transformed himself and the club since his arrival. They were last under .500 on the day before Adames arrived, they’ve gone 41-19 since and taken firm hold of the NL Central. Still, some tinkering remained on the docket for July, as the Brewers picked up Eduardo Escobar, Rowdy Tellez, John Curtiss, and Daniel Norris.
Injuries Keeping Mets From Runaway Division Title: The Mets left deadline day with a more acute awareness of what they lost than what they gained: Jacob deGrom has been shut down for another couple of weeks, leaving the all-world hurler out until at least September. That’s heartbreaking for a Mets team with a clear path to an NL East title. Plenty of upside remains in the Mets rotation with Marcus Stroman and Taijuan Walker posting career years, Carlos Carrasco set to make his debut, and Tylor Megill providing the surprising rookie breakout contenders seek. Still, deGrom and Noah Syndergaard are questionable at best for the rest of the season, and the only rotation additions the Mets made at the deadline were Rich Hill and Trevor Williams.
They did, however, account for Francisco Lindor’s injury by adding Javier Baez, Lindor’s friend and countrymate who can ably fill in while Lindor is out and then slide to second or third when he returns. Baez isn’t, perhaps, the former Cub that Mets fans expected, but he’s an excellent fit alongside Lindor and should bolster the pitching staff with his stellar glove — even if acquiring him did cost them a former first-rounder in Crow-Armstrong.
Braves Lose Acuna For The Season: The deadline might have looked a lot different for Atlanta had they not lost Ronald Acuna Jr. for the season back on July 10th. Without Acuna and Mike Soroka, the Braves weren’t expected to make any major swings at contention. But even a 13-12 July was enough to keep them within four games of first. A fourth consecutive NL East title remains in reach. So they nabbed one of the top available relief arms in Richard Rodriguez, as well as, seemingly, all the outfielders: Jorge Soler, old pal Adam Duvall, Eddie Rosario, and Joc Pederson, plus Stephen Vogt to reinforce their catching corps.
Soft Buys From The Fringes Of Contention: The Giants and Dodgers made headline additions, while the Nats and Cubs took a firm step away from contention. In the middle, there were a number of clubs that neither sold the farm nor raised the white flag. Such as…
…the Phillies… who seemed poised to add a bevy of arms given their bullpen situation, not to mention a starting rotation that’s received underwhelming performances from the back end. Instead, only Kyle Gibson and Ian Kennedy came to help, and they cost the Phillies’ top prospect Spencer Howard. Howard’s handling had been in question all season, and now he’s been served an unceremonious end to his Philly tenure. Gibson’s had a fine season thus far with the Rangers, but his groundball approach will be tested in front of Philly’s subpar infield defense. Sure, Freddy Galvis brings his glove back to help out, but will that be enough?
…and the Reds… who looked to undo their winter penny-pinching by restocking the bullpen. Justin Wilson, Luis Cessa, and Mychal Givens will try to help a bullpen that ranks 29th with a 5.31 ERA. The Reds’ inconsistent play in July kept them squarely on the deadline fence, however, and now that Nick Castellanos is on the injured list, they’re seven games behind the Brewers and looking like longshots for the postseason.
…and the Cardinals…who added a few pieces at the deadline, despite being 9.5 games behind the Brewers and 6.5 out of a wild card spot. The additions were modest, however, as St. Louis went on a run of graybeard southpaws in July, adding 36-year-old Wade LeBlanc, 37-year-old Jon Lester, and 38-year-old J.A. Happ to a rotation fronted by 39-year-old Adam Wainwright and caught by 39-year-old Yadier Molina.
Cellar Dwellers Sell: The Marlins, Pirates, and Diamondbacks, each in last place of their respective divisions, made some moves to turn expiring talent into youth for the future. The Marlins added the biggest fish in Jesus Luzardo, but the Pirates did well for themselves, too, by adding some plug-and-play talent like Michael Chavis from Boston and Bryse Wilson from Atlanta, while also grabbing two prospects from Seattle for Tyler Anderson. The Dbacks weren’t quite as active, but they did move Escobar and Joakim Soria, though a COVID-19 outbreak has brought more pressing issues to their attention.
The Rockies Don’t Trade Trevor Story Or Jon Gray: The most perplexing moves of the deadline were the trades that didn’t happen. Despite having no shot at contention in a division with zero margin for error (in the short-and-long term), the Rockies chose to stand pat rather than build for the future. Holding Gray is one thing, but Story has stated his desire to move on, so their decision not to acquire a prospect or two for him before he walks might be the biggest shock of deadline season.
Rockies’ shortstop Trevor Story is “confused” after not being traded before today’s deadline, according to Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post. “I don’t have really anything good to say about the situation and how it unfolded,” Story says.
Story has been often mentioned as a logical trade candidate, given the fact that he’s a pending free agent on a non-competitive club. Even here at MLBTR, Steve Adams placed Story 7th on a list of top trade candidates just a few days ago, noting that it was unlikely the club would hang onto him, though admitting there was a slight chance of the club hanging onto the slugger and making him a qualifying offer at year’s end. That appears to have been the thinking in the Colorado front office.
“With what we were offered, we thought the (competitive balance) pick was better suited for us and we could have Trevor on our team for another two months,” general manager Bill Schmidt said. The White Sox, Rays and Blue Jays apparently made offers that didn’t match up to that draft pick, at least in the estimation of Schmidt and his team.
Perhaps the offer were somewhat dulled by Story’s subpar season. His wRC+ of 84 is well below his marks over the past three years, which all ranged between 117 and 128. But given that his strikeout and walk rates are in line with previous years and his BABIP is way down, some teams surely could have believed that regression was due. Regardless, Story will remain a Rockie for two more months, with his seeming frustration with management not boding well for their chances at re-signing him in free agency.
Jon Gray, another impending free agent, also remains a member of the club after the deadline. Saunders notes that Gray “wants to stay in Colorado” and the club has “begun preliminary talks about a new contract with him.” It will be interesting to see if such talks are able to come to fruition. Gray is having an excellent season, with his current 3.67 ERA tied for a career-best, especially impressive in the thin Colorado air. Speculatively speaking, it might be tough to get a player to sign an extension when he’s so close to free agency and enjoying a solid platform year.
Going forward, Schmidt doesn’t believe a big rebuild is in the cards for the club. “I truly in my heart believe that this is a very talented team that underperformed the last couple of years. I’m not even going to count last year because it was a difficult year, but I think we underperformed,” Schmidt says. This seems to be quite a rose-colored view of the situation in Colorado. They are at least 15 games behind each of the Giants, Dodgers and Padres. And all three of those teams seem to have enough talent and resources to be well-positioned to continue playing at high levels into the future. With the already-struggling Rockies poised to lose a talent like Story, and perhaps Gray as well, it’s hard to envision them gaining so much ground on their competitors.
2:26 pm: The Giants and Rockies remain engaged on Story with a little more than a half hour to go before the deadline, reports Feinsand.
1:03 pm: With just under two hours before the deadline, the Rockies have lowered their asking price on Story, one executive tells Sherman. That person suggests it’s now more likely than not that Story will be traded.
12:03 pm: There’s little traction between the Rockies and either of Tampa Bay or Toronto on a Story deal at the moment, hears Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post. Of course, the Jays just parted with a pair of top prospects to land José Berríos from the Twins, so it’s possible they might be disinclined to continue to mine the farm system for Story.
11:29 am: Some rival executives think the Rays and Blue Jays are the main contenders to land Rockies shortstop Trevor Story before this afternoon’s trade deadline, reports Joel Sherman of the New York Post (Twitter link). Bob Nightengale of USA Today adds that the Rays, in particular, are making a “hard push” to land Story. Mark Feinsand of MLB.com suggests the Giants also have interest, while Thomas Harding of MLB.com indicates the Rockies have had discussions regarding Story with the Cardinals as well.
Of course, that’s only if Story winds up traded at all, which Sherman confirms is far from a lock. The Rockies have expressed comfort with holding onto Story for weeks. While that could just be public posturing, it seems Colorado’s planning to hang onto fellow impending free agent Jon Gray past the deadline.
The end game there, however, is to try to hammer out a long-term deal with Gray. Story, on the other hand, isn’t seen as especially likely to sign an extension. The Rockies instead would be more likely to make him a qualifying offer and receive a compensatory draft choice if/when he rejects and signs elsewhere in free agency.
Of course, Story’s play this season has complicated matters. While he looked like an obvious trade candidate coming into the year on the heels of a .293/.361/.544 performance from 2019-20, he’s struggled to produce at the plate this season. The 28-year-old has a below-average .240/.312/.429 line (84 wRC+) over 375 plate appearances. That’s surely depressing the caliber of prospect teams are willing to part with, so there’s some sense for Colorado in recouping a high 2022 draft choice if rivals aren’t putting forth especially strong offers.
The Rays, Jays, Giants and Cardinals are all new reported entrants into the Story market. Sherman adds that the Mets — who have been linked to Story for a while — are still on the periphery but that the Rockies shortstop doesn’t seem to be their top priority at this time. The Yankees, Brewers and White Sox have also all been tied to Story in the past but seem less likely after adding to their infield in other ways (Anthony Rizzo, Eduardo Escobar and César Hernández, respectively).
1:11pm: NJ.com’s Brendan Kuty also hears the Yankees are shopping Voit, however he adds that they’ve yet to receive much interest.
July 30, 12:33pm: The Yankees are “looking to trade” Voit, MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports (Twitter link). Newly acquired Anthony Rizzo is slotting in at first base over him for the remainder of the season, and the Yankees can look to add a shortstop this winter, moving Gleyber Torres to second base and DJ LeMahieu to first base.
July 29: Luke Voit’s name has come up in trade discussions the Yankees are having with various teams, reports the YES Network’s Jack Curry (via Twitter). Voit is currently on the injured list with a bone bruise in his knee, but he’s nearing a return to the active roster.
It’s been an injury-marred season for 30-year-old Voit, who missed the first month-plus after undergoing surgery to repair a meniscus tear and then quickly landed back on the injured list with an oblique strain. This is his third IL stint of the year, and that trio of maladies has combined to limit him to 29 games and 122 plate appearances.
Voit got out to a slow start when he initially returned from knee surgery, but he was hitting quite well prior to his most recent knee troubles. In 17 games and 72 plate appearances from June 22 through July 11, Voit slashed at a .281/.361/.453 clip with a pair of homers, three doubles and a triple. That’s still a far cry from Voit’s powerhouse showing in 2020’s shortened slate of games. He appeared in 56 of the Yankees’ 60 contests last summer, hitting .277/.338/.610 and pacing all of Major League Baseball with 22 home runs.
When he’s at his best, Voit is a force to be reckoned with at the plate, but some of the Yankees’ recent dealings and rumored targets call his fit with the lineup into question. New York, for instance, has been repeatedly linked to Rockies shortstop Trevor Story in recent days. MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand tweeted not long ago, in fact, that the Yankees’ interest in adding Story is quite real. However, acquiring Story would likely necessitate sliding Gleyber Torres to second base, thus pushing DJ LeMahieu to first base, where Voit is traditionally stationed. The presence of Joey Gallo, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton crowds the DH scene, and if New York’s reported interest in Kyle Schwarber manifests in a trade, that would only further muddy Voit’s role.
Voit is playing the 2021 season on a $4.7MM salary and will be due a raise in arbitration this winter. The lack of playing time and diminished production from his injuries will curb his earning power to an extent, but it’s fair to expect his salary to climb north of $6MM. He’s a Super Two player, so he’ll be eligible for arbitration in each of the next three offseasons before reaching free agency upon the conclusion of the 2024 campaign.
The Mets and Cubs have discussed various permutations of deals including right-hander Zach Davies and one of Kris Bryant or Javier Baez, per MLB Network’s Jon Heyman (all Twitter links). SNY’s Andy Martino reports that the Mets are looking for pitching depth and a bat, with Bryant, Baez and Rockies shortstop Trevor Story among their targets. The Denver Post’s Patrick Saunders tweets that the Mets are “very” interested in Story, though Saunders has also suggested that if the Rockies trade Story, it’ll likely happen close to the actual deadline.
Reports connecting the Mets to Bryant, in particular, date back to the offseason. He’d give the Mets the right-handed bat they covet and a defensive upgrade over the reportedly available J.D. Davis at third base, in addition to providing a corner outfield option depending on injuries or pitching matchups. Baez, meanwhile, could step in for the currently injured Francisco Lindor until he’s able to return next month, then slide over to second base. That same scenario could apply to Story.
Of the three bats in question, Bryant is having far and away the best all-around season. The former Rookie of the Year and NL MVP is slashing .267/.358/.503 with 18 home runs. Bryant endured a miserable slump in June, collecting just nine hits in 88 plate appearances and going all month without a multi-hit game, but he’s bounced back in July with a hearty .290/.405/.516 showing. He’s earning $19.5MM in 2021 and comes with the highest price tag of this high-profile trio.
Baez, earning $11.65MM in his final year of club control, has shown the most power of the bunch but also the most concerning levels of plate discipline. He’s ripped 22 homers, but as his .248/.292/.484 slash shows, his on-base abilities (or lack thereof) are somewhat troublesome. Baez has walked at just a 4.2 percent clip this year, and while he’s always been a free swinger, his current 36.3 strikeout rate is the worst among all qualified hitters. That said, he and Lindor would form a dynamic defensive middle infield tandem.
The 28-year-old Story, like Baez and Bryant, is a free agent at season’s end. He’s having arguably the worst season of his career in 2021, hitting .240/.312/.429 (84 wRC+) with 13 home runs. Eight of those long balls have come since June 20. On the one hand, that’s encouraging. On the other, he’s batted .211 with a .270 OBP in that time. Story’s track record speaks for itself — he batted .292/.355/.554 with 83 home runs from 2018-20 — but he hasn’t really found much consistency in 2021. He’s earning $18.5MM this season.
As for Davies, he’d provide the Mets with a rental starter to help cover innings at the back of the rotation while their top starters mend. Jacob deGrom is currently on the injured list, while neither Noah Syndergaard nor Carlos Carrasco has thrown a pitch for the Mets so far in 2021. (Carrasco is expected to return this weekend.) The need for help at the back of the rotation has been exacerbated by injuries to David Peterson, Joey Lucchesi, Jordan Yamamoto and others.
Even among the Mets’ healthy starters, right-hander Taijuan Walker has begun to struggle, allowing 16 runs in his past 9 1/3 innings. The Mets already went out and acquired Rich Hill, but it seems they’re still understandably keen on stockpiling as much depth as possible for the final couple months of the season — and for a hopeful postseason bid.
The 28-year-old Davies has made 22 starts and pitched to a 4.39 ERA for the Cubs, but he’s averaged fewer than five innings per outing and carries some rather unsightly strikeout and walk rates. Davies’ 16.3 percent strikeout rate is third-lowest among qualified starters, while his 12.1 percent walk rate is the highest of any qualified starter in MLB. That 4.2 K-BB% differential is also last among qualified starters. Given that profile and the fact that he’s a pending free agent with an $8.625MM salary, Davies probably doesn’t carry too much standalone value.
It’s been a mostly quiet deadline season thus far for the Mets, who lead the NL East by three and a half games. The second-place Phillies, however, completed their second improbable walk-off comeback of the week yesterday to continue putting pressure on their rivals. Deesha Thosar of the New York Daily News tweeted last night that owner Steve Cohen is pushing his front office to be active and improve the club, so it seems fair to anticipate some fireworks coming from Queens today.
As a 36-year-old closer on a fourth-place team, Bard looked like nearly as much of a slam-dunk trade candidate as Gray and Story. He’s controlled through the 2022 season via arbitration, but relievers are inherently volatile, and the Rockies can’t be reasonably expected to contend for a division title next year.
Bard has allowed three runs in his past two outings, which has bumped his ERA up a bit, but he’s still sitting at a respectable 4.32 mark with a 28.5 percent strikeout rate and 10.9 percent walk rate. Given his 97.8 mph average fastball, his ability to miss bats and his affordable $2.925MM salary, one would imagine there’d be some decent interest in Bard.
6:37am: Despite standing out as one of the most logical trade candidates on the market, Jon Gray remains in Colorado with nine hours until this afternoon’s trade deadline. There are, of course, many likely trade candidates who’ve yet to change hands, but it seems that as is the case with Trevor Story, the Rockies are at least considering hanging onto Gray.
The right-hander himself tells Danielle Allentuck of the Denver Gazette that he and the team have had preliminary talks about an extension, adding that he hopes to stay with the Rockies. Meanwhile, MLB Network’s Jon Heyman tweets that the Rockies have also considered hanging onto Gray and making him a qualifying offer at season’s end.
Gray, 29, was the No. 3 overall pick in the 2013 draft and stands out as one of the best homegrown arms the Rockies have developed. He’s in the midst of a the third sub-4.00 ERA of his season, pitching to a 3.67 ERA with a 22 percent strikeout rate, a 9.7 percent walk rate and a 49.8 percent ground-ball rate. Those strikeout and walk rates are a ways off from his career-best marks, and Gray’s 94.8 mph average heater is down a tick from his career-high 96.1 mph in 2017. But Gray is also limiting hard contact at the best rates of his career and has been a generally durable starter for the Rox this season. He’s playing on a $6MM salary in his final season of club control before free agency.
Given all that and the Rockies’ obvious lack of playoff chances, there ought to be many teams trying to acquire Gray — and it sounds as though the interest is there. Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post reports that the Blue Jays, Padres, Mariners, White Sox and Mets are among the clubs that have scouted and shown varying levels of interest in Gray.
With Max Scherzer likely L.A.-bound and Jose Berrios now looking increasingly likely to be dealt, the floodgates on the remaining available starting pitchers could open in the hours leading up to the deadline. Gray, Michael Pineda, Zach Davies, Kyle Gibson and Merrill Kelly all seem like strong candidates to be dealt, and the removal of the market’s top two names — if Berrios is moved early in the day — should give the teams that miss out ample time to pivot to secondary targets.
Of course, that again assumes that Gray will be moved at all. The Rockies march to the beat of their own drum, to say the least. Perhaps the notion of keeping Gray and/or Story is mere posturing in an effort to extract a larger return, but the Rockies have resisted rebuilding moves for years despite rarely contending. Manager Bud Black said earlier this month they’ve already informed top starter German Marquez that he won’t be traded, which seems to suggest they believe a rapid turnaround is possible within the next couple years. So far, the Rockies’ lone move has been to trade Mychal Givens to the Reds.
The Mets have made slugging corner infielder/outfielder J.D. Davis available in trades, reports ESPN’s Kiley McDaniel. As was rumored throughout the offseason, McDaniel notes that some execs have speculated the Mets could be hoping to include Davis as part of a package to acquire a prominent name such as Kris Bryant or Trevor Story. Nothing involving Davis is close at this time, he adds.
That Davis’ name has again surfaced in rumors only feels natural, given how prominently he was cited in offseason rumblings. The 28-year-old has been an oft-cited trade possibility despite being a vastly above-average hitter during his time with the Mets — in part due to questions about his glovework. Davis’ defense was put under a microscope early this year, in particular, when he made three errors at third base in a span of two games. He’s missed most of the season since that time, owing to a finger injury, but he hasn’t made an error since that time — a span of 18 games and 26 chances at the hot corner.
That’s not to say concerns about Davis’ glove are without merit. He’s spent 944 career innings at third base and posted -21 Defensive Runs Saved, a -4.0 Ultimate Zone Rating and -10 Outs Above Average. It’s not a great profile, and the Mets have also tried Davis in left field. His former club, the Astros, gave him some brief looks at first base, too.
Setting the defensive question marks aside, though, the draw of Davis is very clearly his bat — and with good reason. He’s absolutely raked in 89 plate appearances this season, hitting .325/.416/.545 with four long balls and five doubles. That’s not just a total small-sample fluke, either; since being traded to the Mets, Davis has produced .292/.375/.490 batting line with 32 home runs and 36 doubles in just 771 plate appearances. He’s been 33 percent better than a league-average hitter, by measure of wRC+. That’s borderline star-level production at the plate, as that 133 wRC+ places him right alongside the likes of Rafael Devers, Jesse Winker, Trea Turner, Cody Bellinger and teammate Pete Alonso since the start of the 2019 season. Davis, quite simply, can mash.
Beyond his talent at the plate, Davis offers a long-term option for interested trade partners. He’s earning $2.1MM in 2021 as a first-time arbitration player. Davis reached arbitration a year early as a Super Two player, meaning he’s controllable for three more years beyond the current season. He can be expected to put up some strong counting numbers moving forward, which ought to make his subsequent arbitration raises notable, but this year’s missed time on the injured list will suppress his 2022 salary a bit, at the very least.
There’s no pressure for the Mets to move Davis, given that remaining control. In fact, with most expecting the universal designated hitter to come to the National League in 2022, one could argue that Davis’ value will only go up for the Mets (although the also have both Dominic Smith and Alonso, so they certainly have first base/DH options elsewhere on the roster). As was the case in the offseason, it seems likelier that the win-now Mets would move Davis in a deal to bring back MLB talent rather than prospects.
The Rockies announced Thursday that they’ve acquired right-hander Ashton Goudeau from the Reds in exchange for cash. Cincinnati had designated Goudeau for assignment earlier in the week.
The 29-year-old Goudeau’s transaction log reads like something from a video game. Originally a Royals draft selection, Goudeau went to the Mariners in exchange for cash in 2018. He elected free agency at season’s end, signed with the Rockies and has since been claimed off waivers an astonishing six times. Goudeau has gone from Colorado, to Pittsburgh, to Baltimore, to San Francisco, to Los Angeles, back to Colorado and then to Cincinnati. He’s now back with the Rockies for a third time in exchange for what figures to be a nominal amount of cash. It’s been a tumultuous couple of years for him, but on the plus side, Goudeau has continued to accumulate MLB service and MLB pay throughout his many stops in DFA limbo.
Despite that staggering amount of waiver activity, Goudeau has only actually pitched for two of those teams in the Majors: the Reds and Rockies. He’s allowed 11 runs in 17 1/3 innings at the MLB level, but teams continue to be intrigued by his raw stuff despite the lack of success either in the Majors or in Triple-A (where he has a 6.59 ERA in 68 1/3 innings).
The Rockies announced they’ve placed right-hander Chi Chi González on the COVID-19 injured list. To take his spot on the active and 40-man rosters, Colorado selected righty Jesús Tinoco. Colorado also reinstated Jhoulys Chacín from the COVID list and optioned Justin Lawrence.
Tinoco tossed 44 2/3 innings of relief from 2019-20 between Colorado and Miami. Over that time, he worked to a 4.03 ERA but didn’t manage especially promising peripherals. Tinoco has struck out just 17.6% of opposing hitters at the highest level while walking a too-high 15% of batters faced.
Colorado passed Tinoco through outright waivers last offseason. He’s spent the entire year with Triple-A Albuquerque, tossing 33 2/3 frames of 7.75 ERA ball. Because Tinoco was selected as a COVID replacement, he can be returned to Triple-A without being placed on waivers upon another player’s reinstatement from the COVID IL.