Let’s call it Wednesday

Posted: July 25, 2018 by Sports Time Radio in baseball, sports, Sports Time Radio, Uncategorized

The Baltimore Orioles rebuild started by sending Manny Machado to the Los Angels Dodgers and it continued last night with the trade of Zach Britton.

Britton was dealt to the New York Yankees for three prospects all pitchers. Dillion Tate is a right handed pitcher who was 5-2 with a 3.38 ERA in 15 starts at Double-A. Right hander Cody Carroll and lefthander Josh Rogers where both pitching in Triple-A. Carroll has pitched in 32 games and is 3-0 with an ERA of 2.38 with 9 saves. Rogers was 6-8 with an ERA of 3.95 in 19 starts.

The Orioles kept all three in the minors at the levels they where at. Tate went to Double-A Bowie while Carroll and Rogers where assigned to Triple-A Norfolk.

Britton’s season didn’t start until June 12th as he had Achilles tendon surgery in the off season. He’s appeared in 11 games for the Orioles going 1-0 with an ERA of 3.45 with 4 saves.

Britton isn’t quite back to that dominant closer form he showed before getting injury, but he hasn’t given up a run in his last 8 appearances and truth be told the Yankees don’t need him to be that guy. Britton has been used in back to back games, but hasn’t pitched more than an 1 1/3rd in a game this season.

Britton strengthens what looked to be an already strong Yankees bullpen. Aroldis Chapman has an ERA of 2.03 while Dellin Betances (2.55) and Chad Green (2.63) have ERA’s under 3 while David Robertson has a respectable 3.05 ERA. Jonathan Holder and A.J. Cole have also contributed to the Yankees bullpen success. Adam Warren recently returned from injury while Chasen Shreve has had some struggles this season.

The addition of Britton will allow the Yankees to match up late in games against left handed hitters without having to stretch Chapman out. Britton also has the closing resume to give Chapman a day off if needed.

Britton is in the final year of his contract and since he was dealt mid-season the Yankees will not be able to give him a qualifying offer. That means if Britton signs with someone other than the Yankees next season New York won’t receive any compensation for him. The Yankees are also picking up the remainder of Britton’s 2018 salary which is right around 4.38 million dollars.

There where a lot of teams interested in acquiring Britton and the Yankees getting him is as much a game of keep away as it is improving their own bullpen. It was reported that the Houston Astros and the Chicago Cubs where two contenders interested in Britton. Now they’ll have to look elsewhere and the Yankees won’t have to face Britton if they where to meet up with the Astros in the post season.

With Britton, Brad Hand and Jeurys Familia all being traded it’s going to be difficult for a team to find a closer type of pitcher. Even though everyone seemed to think that the Oakland A’s should be sellers and deal their closer Blake Treinen they decided to go a different route and traded for Familia. With the Pittsburgh Pirates on an 11 game winning streak which has got them back into striking distance of a wild card spot they’ll more than likely hang into their closer Felipe Vazquez. So who’s that leave out there?

Fernando Rodney has converted 21 of his 26 saves chances for the Minnesota Twins. Rodney is 41 years old and in his 16th season, but can still get the job done. The Twins are 46-53 and it doesn’t look like they’ll be catching the Cleveland Indians in the AL Central; so they might look to trade Rodney. Rodney would be owed the remainder of his $4.25 million dollar salary for this season and he has an option for next season at the same salary, but he could be bought out for $250,000.

The Texas Rangers aren’t going to be contenders this season and there has been a lot of talk about them trading Cole Hamels, but would they deal their closer? Keone Kela is just 25 and has converted 23 of his 24 save chances this season. The price tag might be a little high for Kela as he doesn’t reach arbitration until this coming off season and can’t be a free agent until the 2022 season. There are some reports that the Pirates have contacted the Rangers about Kela’s availability.

At 43-60 the Detroit Tigers have played better in the first year of their rebuild than I think even they expected, but with the rebuild going on I’m sure they’d be open to dealing their closer Shane Greene. Greene has converted 20 of his 23 saves chances this season, but does have an ERA of 3.86. Greene is 29 years old and goes into arbitration next season and can become a free agent in 2021.

The Chicago White Sox are in the exact same position that the Tigers are. Jokim Soria is closing for the White Sox this season and has converted 16 of his 19 save opportunities. Soria is 34 nd in his 11th season. He’s actually spent more time pitching as a set up man than he has a closer; so it shouldn’t be difficult for him to work back into that role. Soria is making $9 million dollars this season and has an option for next season at $10 million dollars, but the contract has a $1 million dollar buy out.

I think the hot name on the relief front will be Raisel Iglesias of the Cincinnati Reds. Iglesias has converted 19 of his 22 save chances this season, but has an ERA of just 2.20. Iglesias is 28 years old and any team acquiring him would have him under control for four years if they wanted to. Iglesias is eligible for arbitration in 2021 and would be allowed to become a free agent in 2022. Interestingly there are teams out there that have mentioned that they’d be interested in seeing if Iglesias could become a starter, but that would be next season after a full spring training of being stretched out as a starter. the Reds seem to have been rebuilding for quite a few years without much success. Would they move Iglesias for a package of prospects and try to speed up that rebuild?

There’s a pretty good list of closers that could be traded before the July 31st deadline. Did you see someone that your favorite team should be looking at? Or is there someone that isn’t listed that should be? Let me know in the comments.

You can listen to the Sports Time Radio podcast live on BlogTalkRadio.com, but don’t forget that the podcast is also available for you to listen to any time you want at TuneIn.com.

Look me up on Twitter @Burketime

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