Monday, May 20, 2019

MLB trade review: Braves acquire Swarzak, Mariners get Vizcaino

        The Atlanta Braves have acquired RHP Anthony Swarzak and cash from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for RHP Aroyds Vizcaino and LHP Jesse Biddle.

        The Braves had a weak bullpen to start the season, but that got even worse when Vizcaino, their closer, was injured for the season. In this trade, they acquire Swarzak, who could improve their bullpen, and cash. That cash could be used to help acquire free agent closer Craig Kimbrel, after the draft is over and there is no pick compensation. Swarzak has had a rough start to the season.

         Swarzak, 33, has a 5.27 ERA with a 8.07 FIP and 17 strikeouts, plus three saves, in 13.2 innings. In his MLB career for the Mariners, New York Mets, Chicago White Sox, Milwaukee Brewers, New York Yankees, Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians, Swarzak has a 4.33 ERA, a 4.24 FIP, and 450 strikeouts, plus nine saves in 601.1 innings.

          For the Mariners, they have been struggling, and they needed a shake up. In acquiring Vizcaino, they take a gamble that could definitely pay of next year. He's out for the year, but was the Braves' closer. Biddle is a former first round pick who had his first full major league season last year.

          Vizcaino, 28, had a 2.25 ERA with one save and six strikeouts in four innings this year. In his MLB career for the Braves and Chicago Cubs, Vizcaino has a 3.01 ERA, a 3.58 FIP, with 218 strikeouts and 50 saves in 194.1 innings.

          Biddle, 27, had a 5.40 ERA with a 4.90 FIP and 11 strikeouts in 11.2 innings this year. In his two year major league career, Biddle has a 3.46 ERA with a 4.04 FIP and 78 strikeouts in 75.1 innings.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

MLB trade review: Pirates acquire Stratton

Photo from CBS

         The Pittsburgh Pirates have acquired RHP Chris Stratton from the Los Angeles Angels in exchange for cash considerations.

         Stratton is a starter who also has made appearances from the bullpen in his career. To make room for Stratton on the 40 man roster, Nick Burdi was moved to the 60 day IL. Stratton had 10 wins for the Giants last year as part of their rotation. He was acquired by the Angels this March, but was terrible in seven games (five starts). That led to him being DFA'd earlier this week.

         Stratton, 28, has a 8.59 ERA with a 6.10 FIP and 22 strikeouts in 29.1 innings this year. In his MLB career for the Angels and Giants, Stratton has a 5.11 ERA with a 4.57 FIP and 191 strikeouts in 243 innings.


Monday, May 6, 2019

MLB trade review: Mets acquire Font

           The New York Mets have acquired RHP Wilmer Font from the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for cash considerations or a player to be named later.

            The Mets need pitching help badly, with Jason Vargas and Steven Matz off to bad starts. Vargas is in danger of losing his rotation spot, and the Mets also have a weak front of their bullpen. Font is brought in to improve that. He started five games for the Rays last year, the only five starts of his career, and was very good in them. He could fill in as a spot starter, and bullpen reliever.

            Font, 29, has a 5.79 ERA with 18 strikeouts and a 3.50 FIP in 14 innings with the Rays this year. He had a 1.67 ERA in 27 innings over nine games (five starts) with the Rays in 2018. In his major league career for the Rays, Los Angeles Dodgers, Oakland A's and Texas Rangers, Font has a 6.51 ERA with 58 strikeouts and a 6.05 FIP in 65 innings.

            For the Rays, Font was off to a rough start, and it clears up a roster spot for Casey Sadler, who was recalled following the trade. Except Ryan Yarbrough, who has pitched in just five games as a long reliever and has had minor league time, Font had the highest ERA of a Rays' pitcher, with ace Blake Snell's 4.31 the next closest, with a median ERA of 2.32 (between Diego Castillo and Jalen Beeks, credit to the Athletic's Josh Tolentino for that note via Twitter). Font hasn't had a long term home in his MLB career, and the Mets will be his fifth team, and sixth organization (he was a minor leaguer for the Blue Jays, but never made an MLB appearance).

Sunday, April 28, 2019

MLB trade review: Braves acquire Blevins

Photo from SNY

        The Atlanta Braves have acquired LHP Jerry Blevins from the Oakland Athletics in exchange for cash considerations or a player to be named later.

        The Braves badly need bullpen depth. Their bullpen wasn't great entering the season, and it got even worse when closer Arodys Vizcaino got injured, and will miss the season. To put Blevins on the 40 man roster, Vizcaino was moved to the 60 day IL. The Braves still remain a suitor for free agent Craig Kimbrel, with AJ Minter struggling in the closer role. The only relievers that are off to a good start are Luke Jackson, and Dan Winkler, who hasn't pitched much (4.2 innings). Blevins is an experienced reliever, who aside from 2018, has had a good career as of late.

         Blevins, 35, hasn't pitched in the MLB this year. In 2018 with the New York Mets, Blevins had a 4.85 ERA, a 4.97 FIP and 41 strikeouts in 42.2 innings. In his MLB career with the Mets, A's and Washington Nationals, Blevins has a 3.52 ERA, with a 3.66 FIP plus 471 strikeouts in 463 innings.

         For the A's, they signed Blevins to a minor league deal, hoping that he would have the production he had when he was with the team from 2007 to 2013, including three good years to end his A's tenure. Blevins had an awful Spring Training, allowing eight runs in 3.1 innings, and was in AAA. Getting something for him is better than releasing the lefty.