|The Rangers changed out catchers in a minor trade with the Cubs, acquiring Geovany Soto at the expense of Double-A Frisco righthander Jake Brigham. Texas then designated catcher Yorvit Torrealba for assignment, leaving Soto to team with Mike Napoli behind the plate for the Rangers. The Cubs also included cash in the deal and will receive either a player to be named or cash considerations in exchange.
The 2008 National League rookie of the year, Soto batted just .195/.278/.345 with six homers in 174 at-bats for Chicago this year, and the 29-year-old’s bat has been in steady decline since hitting .280, belting 17 homers and putting up a .890 OPS two years ago.
|Jake Brigham, rhp
Age: 24. Born: Feb 10, 1988 in Winter Garden, Fla.
Ht.: 6-3. Wt.: 210.
Bats: R. Throws: R.
School: Central Florida Christian Academy, Ocoee, Fla.
Career Transactions: Selected by Rangers in sixth round of 2006 draft; signed June 15, 2006 … On disabled list, April 3-Oct. 20, 2008.
Brigham had tied for the Texas League lead with 116 strikeouts at the time of the trade, but he stood alone in first place with 19 home runs allowed thanks to a severe platoon split. Lefthanded batters get a good look at the ball because of Brigham’s overhand arm slot, and they have batted .287/.369/.544 with 10 homers in 171 at-bats against him. He made up for that deficiency by fanning a quarter of the righthanded batters to oppose him with a solid fastball/curveball mix. Brigham topped out near 97 mph a couple years ago but sits more comfortably at 88-92 these days.
|Geovany Soto, c
Age: 29. Bats: R. Remaining Commitment: Under contract for $4.3 million this season (approximately $717,000 per month), then arbitration-eligible for 2013 season.
Contract details courtesy of Cot’s Baseball Contracts.