The Rays became the third team to acquire bullpen help via trade on Monday, about 48 hours before the deadline, promising future considerations to the White Sox for veteran righthander Jesse Crain. The two teams will negotiate the players and/or cash headed to Chicago over the “next several weeks.”
UPDATE: The White Sox acquired two low-level, low-ceiling prospects on Oct. 16 to complete the deal: lefthander Sean Bierman and third baseman Ben Kline. Both players are 24 years old and have not yet reached Double-A.
The 32-year-old Crain has not pitched since June 29 and is on the disabled list with a sore shoulder. While Tampa Bay doesn’t know exactly when the veteran reliever will return, general manager Andrew Friedman is confident the Rays’ medical staff can get him back on the field.
Teams shopping for pitchers this month have come away with starters Scott Feldman (Orioles) and Matt Garza (Rangers) as well as relievers Scott Downs (Braves), Francisco Rodriguez (Orioles) and Jose Veras (Tigers).
|White Sox Acquire|
Sean Bierman, lhp
Career Transactions: Selected by Rays in 10th round of 2012 draft; signed June 6, 2012.
Bierman commands the ball well, notching 6.9 strikeouts and 1.4 walks per nine innings across two Class A levels this season, but he lacks a plus pitch to put away batters or come from behind in the count. His fastball sits in the high 80s and runs in on the hands of lefthanders, but neither his fringy slider nor changeup misses enough bats when thrown in the strike zone.
Ben Kline, 3b
Age: 24. Bats: R.
Career Transactions: Selected by Rays in 32nd round of 2012 draft; signed June 8, 2012.
Kline played primarily third base and first base at two Class A levels, hitting well for Bowling Green in April and not so well at Charlotte for two months prior to a demotion to the short-season New York-Penn League on Aug. 14. He regained his batting stroke at Hudson Valley while playing first base and corner outfield.
Jesse Crain, rhp
Remaining Commitment: Prorated portion of $4.5 million salary for 2013.