The final week of July is here, meaning trades will temporarily become the norm throughout Major League Baseball. The San Diego Padres got in on the action on Sunday evening by striking a deal with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The two sides are in agreement on a swap that sends All-Star second baseman Adam Frazier to San Diego in exchange for three prospects, according to Jeff Passan of ESPN.com.
The San Diego Padres are acquiring second baseman/outfielder Adam Frazier from the Pittsburgh Pirates, sources tell ESPN.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) July 25, 2021
Frazier, 29, leads baseball in hits this year and is not a free agent until after the 2022 season. One of the best bats on the trade market.
Frazier, who primarily plays second base but has seen limited time in left field, owns a .327/.392/.453 slash line with 132 wRC+ and a .362 BABIP. He’s posted a career-high 8.3 percent strikeout rate and career-low 10.6 percent strikeout rate, both of which speak to his increased value at the plate this year. The former sixth-round pick owns a net 2.9 fWAR this year, including 16.1 wins on offense.
Frazier ranks in the top-three percent in baseball when it comes to xBA, as well as top-two percent in strikeout and whiff rates.
Defensively, Frazier is a solid player. He posted 4.9 dWAR in 2019 and 3.4 dWAR in 2020 before falling to -0.9 wins this season. At second base, the 29-year-old has 1.0 DRS and a -5.9 UZR/150 to accompany his .986 fielding percentage.
San Diego, which famously went on a massive shopping spree at last year’s deadline, is clearly getting an early jump on this year’s market. Presumably, they’ll play Frazier at second base while shifting Cronenworth into more of a utility-type role with a focus on first base.
Frazier is under team control through 2022, giving San Diego over a year to negotiate an extension with him. The Padres will fetch $1.4 million from the Pirates in this deal, allowing them to retain him for the league minimum this year and an arbitration salary next year.
Headlining the return for Pittsburgh is shortstop Tucupita Marcano, who was San Diego’s No. 5 prospect in the latest MLB Pipeline rankings. The 21-year-old had reached base in 36.7 percent of plate appearances at Double-A this season prior to being traded. He’ll be joined by 22-year-old outfielder Jack Suwinski, who logged an impressive .949 OPS at Double-A, and Michell Miliano, a 21-year-old right-hander who has amassed a .233 OBA through four minor-league seasons.
Kiley McDaniel of ESPN.com was first to report the complete package heading back to the Pirates.
Source: RHP Michell Miliano is the third player going to Pittsburgh from Sam Diego with SS Tucupita Marcano and OF Jake Suwinski in exchange for UT Adam Frazier.— Kiley McDaniel (@kileymcd) July 25, 2021