The Cincinnati Reds recently signed Brayan Pena to a two-year deal and they appear committed to prospect Devin Mesoraco for the future, so Ryan Hanigan became expendable. So, they traded him to the Tampa Bay Rays in a three-team deal that also includes the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Hanigan had a down year at the plate for the Reds in 2013 (.198/.306/.269 slash), but he's a career .262/.359/.343 hitter and has a solid reputation behind the plate as well. Tampa Bay seems like an excellent match for Hanigan because of their love for high-OBP defensive specialists, and he will likely split time with the recently re-signed Jose Molina -- both players are widely considered to be among baseball's best at pitch framing. In addition to be underrated (if you look at the advanced metrics), Hanigan was projected to earn less than $3M through arbitration in 2014, but the Rays have extended him to a three-year, $10.75M extension with a 4th-year club option that could push the total value up to $13.7M. Sounds pretty Rays-y, doesn't it?
Heath Bell is also headed to Tampa, which doesn't really sound all that Rays-y, but hey, he might just pull a Fernando Rodney out there. Maybe there's less pressure to perform in Tampa because no one goes to the games...
The Reds received left hander David Holmberg from the Diamondbacks in the deal. While, Arizona's main objective appears to have been ridding themselves of Bell's contract (which is listed at $9M for 2014, but the Miami Marlins will pay $4M of that figure), though they will receive minor league righty Justin Choate from the Rays in the deal as well as a player to be named later or other considerations.
Terms of Hanigan deal w/ #Rays, negotiated by Tom O'Connell: $2.75M in 2014, $3.5M in '15, $3.7M in '16, $3.75M option or $800K buyout in 17— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) December 3, 2013
The #Dbacks only have to pay #500,000 of Heath Bell's $9 million salary in 2014.— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) December 3, 2013
#Dbacks PTBN will be from Tampa.— Jack Magruder (@JackMagruder) December 3, 2013
#Dbacks have a list of players to pick from for PTBN. They say deal will be completed within a few weeks, probably.— Jack Magruder (@JackMagruder) December 3, 2013
Stay tuned for further updates...
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