Rangers Give Up Little In Prospects To Add Matt Moore

The Giants traded lefthander Matt Moore to the Rangers in a salary dump on Saturday night, as the deal didn’t cost the Rangers any of their top 30 prospects. Moore is under contract for $9 million in 2018 with a $10 million club option (and $750,000 buyout) for the 2019 season, so the Giants can now reallocate those resources to other players instead.

In the deal, the Rangers also added $750,000 of international bonus pool space for the current 2017-18 signing period, according to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. That space is of less use to the Giants, who are limited to signings of $300,000 or less this signing period, while the Rangers have one of the biggest international bonus pools remaining after missing out on Shohei Ohtani. They could use that money to sign Cuban outfielder Julio Pablo Martinez or another eligible player from now until the period closes on June 15.

Giants acquire: Sam Wolff, RHP (Triple-A Round Rock) Age: 26

The Rangers didn’t give up much to get Moore. Wolff turns 27 in April and reached Triple-A for the first time last year as a reliever, running his fastball into the upper-90s. He posted a 2.38 ERA in 24 appearances at Round Rock but he tore his flexor tendon in his right elbow in August. He is expected to be out until the all-star break.

Israel Cruz, RHP (Rookie-level Arizona League) Age: 20

Cruz is an athletic righthander whose progress stalled in his third professional season, as he got hit hard in the AZL to the tune of a 5.91 ERA. He has yet to pitch above Rookie-ball in four professional seasons, doesn’t have a plus pitch and needs to improve his command of a fastball that sits in the low-90s.

Rangers acquire: Matt Moore, LHP (MLB) Age: 28

Over the last three seasons, Moore has compiled a 4.85 ERA and an 84 ERA+, according to Baseball-Reference.com, and he’s coming off a season with the highest ERA of his career (5.52) with his fastball trending in the wrong direction. He used to throw in the mid-90s when he was one of the top young pitchers in baseball, but now he sits more in the low-90s. He still has an effective curveball and changeup, but fastball command has never been Moore’s strength and now that he’s lost velocity, he has less margin for error. He fits as a back-end starter but, given his troubles at spacious AT&T Park, is a risk to struggle even more at cozy Globe Life Park.

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