The prior week in MLB was about a team adding a big bat to improve chances of making the postseason, an infielder switches leagues, and a former ace gets dealt to a contender.
Los Angeles Angels Acquire OF Justin Upton For Prospect
The Los Angeles Angels made a big move on Thursday as they added a big bat to their lineup. The Angels acquired outfielder Justin Upton from the Detroit Tigers for right-handed pitcher Grayson Long and a player to be named later or cash.
The Tigers today have acquired RHP Grayson Long and a PTBNL or cash considerations from LAA in exchange for OF Justin Upton. pic.twitter.com/Tc7N9eta2H
— Tigers PR (@DetroitTigersPR) August 31, 2017
The Tigers will pay the majority of Upton’s remaining salary for this season, per Bob Nightengale of USA Today.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) August 31, 2017
According to Jon Morosi of MLB Network, Upton told the Tigers that he was likely to opt out of his contract after the 2017 season was finished as the club is in a rebuilding phase, which increased the possibility that he was going to be dealt.
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) August 31, 2017
Upton was having a productive year for the Tigers as he compiled a .279 average and .904 OPS in 125 games with 37 doubles, 28 home runs, 94 RBIs and 10 stolen bases.
The outfielder has a .305 average and 1.016 OPS with 13 homers and 40 RBIs in the second half. The Angels will be Upton’s fifth team in 11 years.
He will provide some protection for both Mike Trout and Albert Pujols in the Angels’ lineup. The Angels at the time of the trade were just one game back of the second American League Wild Card spot.
If Upton decides to remain with Angels beyond this season, he will make $22.1 million per year over the next four years.
That’s a huge chunk of payroll committed to one player, but the Angels are in the final year of paying Josh Hamilton $26.4 million, per Morosi.
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) August 31, 2017
Angels Send Prospect to Braves For Phillips
The Angels remained aggressive on Thursday as they traded for second baseman, Brandon Phillips, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.
Brandon Phillips headed to #Angels, source tells The Athletic.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) September 1, 2017
They sent minor leaguer catcher Tony Sanchez to the Atlanta Braves to complete the deal, the Braves announced.
The Braves have traded INF Brandon Phillips and cash considerations to the Angels in exchange for C Tony Sanchez.
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) September 1, 2017
Aug. 31 was the last day for clubs to add players eligible for the postseason.
Phillips was having a solid season for the Braves as he accumulated a .291 average and .753 OPS in 120 games with 27 doubles, 11 home runs, 52 RBIs and 10 stolen bases.
The Angels haven’t received much from their second base corps of Danny Espinosa, Cliff Pennington and Kaleb Cowart, Phillips will be a considerable upgrade.
Astros Acquire Verlander by Sending Three Prospects to Tigers
The Houston Astros have the best record in the AL but decided to strengthen their rotation for October.
The Astros sent right-handed pitcher Franklin Perez, outfielder Daz Cameron, and catcher Jake Rogers to the Tigers for Justin Verlander, per Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
perez, cameron and rodgers go to detroit for JV
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) September 1, 2017
The Tigers will send at least $10 million to the Astros as part of the Verlander deal, per Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports.
Sources: Tigers are sending significant money to Houston as part of the Verlander deal. Believed to be at least $10 million.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) September 1, 2017
Verlander will receive $28 million in both 2018 and 2019, but his 2020 contract option has been voided, per Bob Nightengale of USA Today.
Astros GM Jeff Luhnow won’t discuss changes to Verlander’s contract, but he’ll receive $28M in 2018 and 2019, and his 2020 option now voided
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) September 1, 2017
The right-hander has had an up-and-down 2017 campaign, as indicated by his 3.82 ERA in 172 innings (28 starts) with 176 K’s, 67 walks issued and 23 homers surrendered.
He’s not the ace from seasons ago but is still a quality pitcher that can keep his club in games.
The Astros did send some talented players to the Tigers to get Verlander.
Perez, who is just 19-years old is already in Double-A, Rogers, a solid defensive catcher has shown some power, and Cameron was part of their 2015 draft that included their current third baseman Alex Bregman, and their best prospect Kyle Tucker, is the son of longtime major leaguer Mike Cameron.
The move to get Verlander is less about him impacting the Astros in the regular season, but more in the postseason.
Verlander has a 3.39 ERA in 16 postseason starts.
- Chris is a 29-year old New Jersey native whose favorite sports team is the Arizona Diamondbacks. He previously attended Western New England College to study Sports Management. Chris has been following the Diamondbacks since he was 12. You can find him on Twitter at @aecanada12.
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