Breast Cancer Awareness
|
|
|
MailTribune.com
  • BASEBALL

    Choo sent to Reds in three-team trade

  • CLEVELAND — Shin-Soo Choo didn't want to be part of the Indians' future. So they're moving on without him.
    • email print
  • CLEVELAND — Shin-Soo Choo didn't want to be part of the Indians' future. So they're moving on without him.
    Cleveland traded the talented outfielder to the Cincinnati Reds and acquired prized pitching prospect Trevor Bauer from the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night in a three-team deal involving nine players.
    The Indians obtained center fielder Drew Stubbs from Cincinnati and received Bauer, the No. 3 pick in the 2011 draft, along with right-handers Matt Albers and Bryan Shaw from the Diamondbacks.
    "This is a trade that can impact our team not only for 2013, but for the future," Indians general manager Chris Antonetti said. "Three of the players we acquired we will have under control for at least the next three seasons."
    Cleveland shipped Choo, infielder Jason Donald and about $3.5 million to the Reds, while sending left-handed reliever Tony Sipp and first baseman Lars Anderson to Arizona.
    The Diamondbacks also received shortstop prospect Didi Gregorius from Cincinnati.
    Choo, who has been Cleveland's primary right fielder since 2006, will play center and bat leadoff for Cincinnati.
    "It was very difficult giving up home-grown talent, but we think Choo can fill the missing parts in our lineup both offensively and defensively," Reds general manager Walt Jocketty said in a statement. "He is an exciting player, and we expect him to set the table."
    Dealing Choo was almost a necessity for the Indians. He was entering the final year of his contract and is eligible for free agency in 2013. The Indians have not been able to work out a deal with agent Scott Boras, who has turned down several extensions in recent years.
    The 30-year-old Choo batted .283 with 16 homers and 67 RBIs in 155 games last season. He had been considered a core player for the Indians, who collapsed in August and finished finished 68-94 — two games out of last place in the AL Central.
    "It was really tough," Antonetti said of trading Choo. "I talked with Shin-Soo tonight and expressed my profound appreciation for his professionalism. He is always one of the first to arrive for workouts, whether it is spring training or just a game."
    With plenty of power in the middle of the lineup, Cincinnati has lacked a prototypical leadoff man to get on base consistently in front of sluggers such as Joey Votto, Jay Bruce, Ryan Ludwick and Todd Frazier. Brandon Phillips, who previously batted cleanup at times, was pressed into leadoff duty last season despite a .322 career on-base percentage.
    Choo can also hit the ball out of the ballpark, but his .381 career OBP fits the bill at the top of the order. He also had 43 doubles and 21 steals this year.
    The speedy Stubbs has played center exclusively for the Reds, helping them win NL Central titles in 2010 and 2012. He batted .213 with 14 homers and 40 RBIs last season, striking out 166 times in 493 at-bats. He has 100 stolen bases over the past three years, including 30 in 2012.
    Bauer, one of baseball's top pitching prospects, became the first member of the 2011 draft class to reach the majors and went 1-2 with a 6.06 ERA in four starts for Arizona this year.
    Bauer spent most of the season in the minors, going a combined 12-2 with a 2.42 ERA in 22 starts at Double-A Mobile and Triple-A Reno. He had 157 strikeouts and 61 walks while allowing 107 hits in 130 1-3 innings.
    Yankees
    Kevin Youkilis and the Yankees reached a deal Tuesday, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press, returning the hard-nosed All-Star to the AL East and filling New York's immediate need for a third baseman.
    The one-year contract for $12 million is pending a physical. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because there was no official announcement.
    Youkilis is expected to play third base while Alex Rodriguez recovers from hip surgery. Rodriguez plans to have the surgery in mid-January and could be sidelined until the All-Star break or beyond.
    Eric Chavez, A-Rod's backup for most of last season, joined Arizona last week. The Yankees considered several options as a stopgap at third, including Jeff Keppinger and Mark Reynolds, but both accepted deals with other teams.
    The Yankees made the offer to Youkilis last week at the baseball winter meetings. The agreement was first reported by Fox Sports.
    Youkilis turns 34 in March. He played third base and first base last season for the Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox.
    Youkilis was traded to the White Sox last June as Boston's new management reshaped the Red Sox roster. He combined to hit a career-low .235 with 19 home runs and 60 RBIs.
    An All-Star in 2008, 2009 and 2011, Youkilis won a Gold Glove at first base in 2007. He is a .283 hitter with 148 home runs in nine seasons, and was on Boston teams that won the World Series in 2004 and 2007.
    For years, Youkilis was one of the more prominent faces in the fierce Red Sox-Yankees rivalry, and his intensity made him among the more popular players at Fenway Park. He and Yankees pitcher Joba Chamberlain had a feud that exemplified the ill will between the clubs — the inside fastballs that caused the trouble tapered off in recent seasons and now they're teammates.
    With the Yankees, Youkilis could also play first base to give Mark Teixeira a break and could be the designated hitter.
    There is still uncertainty about when Rodriguez will return. He is a 14-time All-Star and baseball's priciest player, with his current overall contract worth $275 million.
    Rodriguez hit .272 with 18 home runs and 57 RBIs last season, and is fifth on the career homers list with 647. He slumped to .120 with zero RBIs in the playoffs, and was benched and replaced by a pinch hitter in key situations.
Reader Reaction

      calendar