Three-team trade in the first full week of Spring Training? Sure, why not? It’s THIS offseason, after all.
The Rays, Yankees, and Diamondbacks are getting together on a significant deal:
Source: Dbacks have acquired Steven Souza from Rays in three-team deal. Brandon Drury is headed to the Yankees.
— Nick Piecoro (@nickpiecoro) February 20, 2018
BREAKING: #Rays trade team MVP Souza as part of 3 team deal with #Yankees and #Dbacks. Souza to #Dbacks, 2B Solak and LHP Banda to #Rays (plus another player), Drury To #Yankees. Some of this previously reported
— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) February 20, 2018
The #Dbacks will also send the Rays a pair of PTBNL
— Steve Gilbert (@SteveGilbertMLB) February 20, 2018
— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) February 20, 2018
The biggest names in the deal are that of Steven Souza and Brandon Drury. The former was a breakout outfielder for the Rays in 2017 (120 wRC+, solid defense, 3.7 WAR) who could seriously impact the Diamondbacks, and the latter is a solid, versatile second baseman who provides the Yankees some infield cover on the cheap.
The Rays, for their part, get a couple legit prospects (Solak was a top 10-ish guy in a very good Yankees system, Banda was a top 100 overall prospect until a down 2017 season), and they also get to tank some more and save $3.5 million in Souza’s huge, enormous salary. So … great stuff, I guess.
The primary Cubs-related impact here is on the NL playoff race, as Souza definitely improves the Diamondbacks. They will continue to be right there with the Rockies in chasing the Dodgers, and, at a minimum, a serious contender again in the Wild Card race. Moreover, Souza provides them a player under team control for a bit as they could lose A.J. Pollock after this season.
I guess the other thing to watch out for is a further teardown, with Chris Archer finally headed out the door. No, I don’t think the Cubs would be particularly aggressive suitors, all things considered, but I do think the Brewers and Cardinals would be.
Also, this tweet – from earlier today – is quite sad now:
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) February 20, 2018