The Toronto Blue Jays have acquired outfielder Melky Mesa and right-hander PJ Walters in a trade with the Kansas City Royals, according to Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star. In exchange for the pair, who were both playing at Triple-A Omaha, the Royals will receive cash considerations. The duo will likely be sent to Triple-A Buffalo, where they should serve as no more than organizational depth.
Mesa, 27, was signed out of the Dominican Republic by the New York Yankees in 2003, and is a career .247/.314/.440 hitter in the minors. Best known for his elite athleticism, Mesa was named the best athlete in the Yankees' system by Baseball America in both 2009 and 2010, while also garnering recognition for the system's best outfield arm and as its fastest baserunner. Mesa has had brief stints in the majors in both 2012 and 2013, combining to post a .971 OPS in 16 plate appearances for the Yankees. Prior to the trade, Mesa was enjoying a career year at Triple-A, hitting .284/.346/.527 in 81 plate appearances. He joined the Royals on a minor league deal in December.
Walters, 29, has a much longer big league track record than Mesa, having pitched in the majors every year from 2009-2013. In 152 major league innings for the Cardinals, Blue Jays (he was previously acquired by Toronto in the 2011 Colby Rasmus trade), and Twins, he has posted a 6.28 ERA and -2.4 WAR. Walters has struggled this season, owning a 7.97 ERA and 1.79 K/BB in 40.2 innings pitched for the Omaha Storm Chasers.