Tampa Bay Rays acquire slugger Nelson Cruz in four-player trade with Minnesota Twins

The Tampa Bay Rays have acquired slugger Nelson Cruz in a four-player trade with the Minnesota Twins. “This is a very good trade for the Rays,” Rays executive vice president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said in a statement.

The Tampa Bay Rays and Minnesota Twins announced a deal early this morning that sent outfielder Nelson Cruz to the Twins in exchange for right-handed pitcher Jake Odorizzi, left-handed pitcher Aaron Slegers and minor league outfielder Hunter Renfroe.

The Tampa Bay Rays have acquired slugger Nelson Cruz from the Minnesota Twins in exchange for pitchers Hunter Renfroe, Blake Snell and minor leaguer Jose Castillo. Cruz, 29, was ranked by MLB.com as the No. 6 right fielder in the game, and he has hit a combined .299/.360/.564 with 93 home runs and 272 RBIs over the last three seasons.

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Cruz, Nelson has joined a competitor after packing up his huge bat.

Cruz, one of baseball’s most experienced sluggers, was acquired by the Tampa Bay Rays in a four-player deal with the Minnesota Twins on Thursday night.

Cruz was well aware that he was likely to be traded this month, with the Twins already out of contention. Despite this, he informed reporters that the news was “shattering” and “heartbreaking” to him after spending 212 seasons with the club.

“It’s a difficult one,” Cruz said. “I suppose it’s a new chapter in my life, and I’m going to embrace it the same way I accept everything else in order to help the Tampa Bay Rays win a championship.”

The Rays announced the acquisition of Cruz and minor leaguer Calvin Faucher from Minnesota in exchange for minor league right-handers Joe Ryan and Drew Strotman moments before the start of a four-game series at Cleveland. The Rays, who entered the night one game behind first-place Boston in the AL East, announced the acquisition of Cruz and minor leaguer Calvin Faucher from Minnesota in exchange for minor league right-handers Joe Ryan and Drew Strotman.

  Rays Nelson Cruz
BA 222 .294
OPS 700 .907
HR 13 19
>>Ranks bottom 5 in AL — ESPN Stats & Information

Cruz, 41, is a seven-time All-Star who has 436 home runs and 1,202 RBIs in his career. He’ll provide some pop to the Rays’ lineup and should assist them against left-handed pitchers. They’re slamming against each other. 226 vs. left-handed opponents.

The rest of Cruz’s $13 million salary will be assumed by Tampa Bay, which is known for being thrifty. The Rays started the season with a payroll of $68.3 million, which ranked them 26th out of 30 clubs.

Cruz has also played in 46 postseason games, hitting 17 home runs and driving in 37 runs. He’s in the batter’s box. This season, he hit.294 with 19 homers and 50 RBIs, and in 258 games with the Twins, he hit.984 with 76 homers and a.984 OPS.

Derek Falvey, president of baseball operations for the Minnesota Twins, said, “People joke about how he’s ageless, and it really does feel that way.”

The Twins believed that with a week before the trade deadline and little chance of reaching the playoffs, they’d receive something for Cruz to start building for the future. Minnesota has a 41-55 record going into Thursday.

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“In terms of the way he goes about his business, the way he puts his arm around people, the way he helps us get better in our front-office duties and coaching-staff responsibilities,” Falvey said, “he may be the greatest teammate I’ve ever seen.” “This man is one-of-a-kind.”

Cruz, a 17-year veteran, joined Minnesota in February on a one-year, $13 million contract. He’s also had stints with the Baltimore Ravens and the Texas Longhorns. From 2014 through 2019, he hit at least 37 home runs each season. In 2015, he hit a career-high 44 home runs for the Seattle Mariners.

Cruz said, “We felt we should be in the playoff race.” “We never expected to be in this position. Regrettably, this was not the case. You don’t want to leave the locations where you feel safe and secure. It’s just the way it is. It’s just part of the job.”

Ryan and Strotman were both in Durham’s Triple-A rotation.

Ryan, a 25-year-old who will also throw for Team USA in the Tokyo Olympics, pitched for the Bulls in 57 innings with a 3.63 ERA and 75 strikeouts, and was rated as the No. 10 prospect in Tampa Bay’s organization by MLB.com. In 2018, he was selected in the seventh round of the draft.

In 581/3 innings with Durham, Strotman, 24, had a 3.39 ERA and 62 strikeouts. After being selected in the fourth round in 2017, he was the Rays’ 17th-best prospect.

Faucher, 25, pitched for Double-A Wichita with a 7.04 ERA and 42 strikeouts in 3023 innings. In 2017, the Twins selected him in the 10th round of the draft.

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