It's official. The Angels traded two highly touted prospects - lefty pitcher Alex Torres and third baseman Matt Sweeney - to the Rays for lefty ace Scott Kazmir. The Rays will also receive a player to be named later.
"We're very excited about the player that we can't name yet, but also about the other two," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "The lefty has a great arm, and Sweeney is one of the best hitters in the minors."
There appears to be a sense of disappointment among Rays players, but that is apart of the business. The free agent market for pitchers this offseason is thin and will likely be expensive. Adding Kazmir, 25, who will be under team control through the 2012 season, will give the Angels more stability in the rotation, which was hit hard this year by injuries and the tragic death of pitching prospect Nick Adenhart.
The Rays receive to very successful prospects from the Angels organization. Sweeney batted .299 with 9 home runs in 58 games in Class-A. Sweeney suffered a hip injury in June, and missed two months of the season.
Torres, 21, combined to go 13-4 with a 2.75 ERA in 26 games between Class-A and Double-A.
"There were players that obviously were moved in this deal that they saw value in and they liked — and we liked," Reagins said. "We think that we gave up two talented players, and a third to come. So this was not a basic salary dump."
Kazmir will likely make his first start Wednesday versus Felix Hernandez and the Mariners.