The Texas Rangers dominated the 2016 trade deadline, adding two-time All-Star catcher Jonathan Lucroy and late-inning reliever Jeremy Jeffress from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for two top prospects
The Texas Rangers made a huge splash at the trade deadline with its biggest move coming out of Milwaukee, where the team acquired highly coveted catcher Jonathan Lucroy and right-hander Jeremy Jeffress.
While it does come as a surprise to many that Texas could acquire Lucroy without giving up No. 1 prospect Joey Gallo, GM Jon Daniels must be given props for an exceptional job, keeping Gallo and still getting a deal done before the clock struck 4:00 P.M.
Lucroy has been on the trade block for a while and even invoked his no-trade clause after being dealt to the Cleveland Indians, as Jason Evans wrote. However, it seems as though he is excited to be heading to a contender in Texas, tweeting out this message shortly after the news broke:
The 30-year-old catcher is hitting .299 with 13 home runs and 50 RBI through 95 games in 2016, earning his second All-Star nomination. His contract comes with a $5,250,000 team option for the 2017 season.
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As for Jeffress, the hard-throwing right-hander boasts a 2.22 ERA over 47 appearances. He has been extremely dominant in the closer’s role, accumulating 27 saves on the year. Jeffress enters his first year of arbitration at the end of 2016, officially becoming a free agent in 2020.
The Rangers sit at 62-44 and hold a six-game lead over the Houston Astros in the American League West. The team has the second most wins in baseball, only behind the Chicago Cubs with 63.
Adding Lucroy and Jeffress, as well as New York’s Carlos Beltran has arguably made Texas the World Series favorites in 2016. However, this trade did come at a heavy cost, trading away two of the team’s top three prospects.
The aforementioned Brinson is Texas’ No. 2 prospect and No. 21 in MLB, according to MLB.com. He is currently hitting .237 with 11 home runs and 11 stolen bases. However, he dealt with a shoulder strain that has hurt his numbers in 2016. To put his potential into perspective, the outfielder hit .332 with 20 home runs and 18 stolen bases in 100 games between A+, Double-A, and Triple-A.
As for Ortiz, the right-hander is the team’s best pitching prospect and No. 63 among all MLB prospects. The former first round pick boasts a mid-90s fastball with a hard slider. Between a combination of A+ and Double-A this season, Ortiz has a 3.48 ERA and 8.3 K/9 ratio. What sticks out more is his dominant control, boasting a 4.77 K/BB ratio and 1.7 BB/9.
The Brewers sit nine games under .500 and 15.5 games back from the National League Central-leading Cubs. Rebuilding is the move and the team did just that, acquiring a nice set of prospects that have the potential to be everyday MLB starters.