UPDATE: The deal is done, with reliever Drew Smith going to New York. Click here for full details.
ORIGINAL: The Rays are “moving close” to acquiring first baseman Lucas Duda from the Mets, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post. Though a deal may not be completed tonight, the sides have gained momentum toward a deal.
Sherman notes that the sides came close to a deal involving Duda a few years ago that didn’t reach the finish line, giving reason for caution here. If the deal goes through, Duda will likely get left-handed at-bats as the Rays’ designated hitter, giving Corey Dickerson more time in the outfield in place Colby Rasmus, who stepped away from baseball earlier this month.
New York is aggressively looking to move Duda, Asdrubal Cabrera and Addison Reed before Monday’s deadline, opening up spots for top prospects Dominic Smith and Amed Rosario in the majors. Duda has been commonly linked to the Yankees so far this trade season, though New York may be done with infield additions after acquiring Todd Frazier.
Duda, a free agent at the end of the year, owns a .246/.347/.532 line with 17 homers in 75 games with New York so far this season.