Rays Stay Busy, Trade Matt Andriese to D-Backs
The Rays added to a busy day of trades on Wednesday night, sending righthander Matt Andriese to the D-backs for catcher Michael Perez and righthander Brian Shaffer.
The move was the second trade of the day for the Rays, coming on the heels of a morning trade that sent righthander Nate Eovaldi to the Red Sox for lefthander Jalen Beeks.
Matt Andriese, RHP
Andriese has served in a variety of roles for the Rays this year. He has started four games, working 2-4 innings in that role, but he’s predominantly been a reliable but unspectacular longman in the Rays bullpen. Andriese has worked two or more innings in 16 of his 23 relief appearances this season. He could still end up working in a starter’s role depending on a team’s needs, as he has three pitches (91-94 mph fastball, changeup and curveball) that can handle lengthier outings. As a reliever he fits in the long-relief role, but the change of scenery gives him a chance to try to ascend to possibly a back-end starter spot. Andriese won't be a free agent until 2022 and gives the D-backs a solid, durable big league arm.
Amidst Lockout Uncertainty, Players Opt To Sign In Japan and Korea
With the lockout in effect, a higher tier of players made the move to Japan and Korea this offseason.
Michael Perez, C
A fifth-round pick in 2011, it’s been a long climb for Perez. He has long been one of the best defensive catchers in the D-backs' system, but his struggles at the plate have long held him back. He was not protected last season for the Rule 5 draft and went unpicked. Perez a plus defender who blocks balls in the dirt well, is an adequate framer and has a plus arm. His lack of power is masked to an extent by playing at Triple-A Reno this season, but he is seen as a potential big league backup or third catcher who spends much of the year in Triple-A with the defensive ability to step in and play in the majors. As a lefthanded bat, he’s a good potential fit for that role.
Brian Shaffer, RHP
Shaffer was a sixth-round pick out of Maryland in 2017. He was a very successful and durable pitcher for the Terrapins, working more than 100 innings in 2016 and 2017 while posting a 2.60 and 2.66 ERA, respectively. Shaffer gets plenty of sink on his 88-93 mph fastball and can elevate his four-seamer up in the zone as well. While Shaffer’s fastball is average, his ability to locate it both arm-side and glove-side helps the pitch play up, as he has very advanced control and command for a pitcher in low Class A. That helped him go 7-5, 2.70 with 109 strikeouts and 21 walks in 106.2 innings at low Class A Kane County. His slider will flash plus at times, but he needs to further develop his below-average changeup to remain a starter at higher levels.