MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota Twins stocked up their sputtering pitching workers forward of Tuesday’s commerce deadline by buying All-Star nearer Jorge Lopez in a take care of the Baltimore Orioles and starter Tyler Mahle in a swap with the Cincinnati Reds, giving up a complete of seven prospects.
The 29-year-old Lopez is in the course of a breakout season for the Orioles, with a glowing 1.68 ERA and 19 of his 20 profession saves. The 27-year-old Mahle is 5-7 with a 4.40 ERA in 19 begins with 114 strikeouts over 104⅓ innings for the Reds.
The Twins, who took a one-game lead within the AL Central into their sport on Tuesday evening, have a 5.30 staff ERA for the reason that All-Star break.
Lopez joins a Twins staff that has been determined to search out dependable late-inning choices past Jhoan Duran. Griffin Jax has been a discover after his conversion from a beginning function in 2021, however Emilio Pagan was lately moved into lower-leverage conditions and Tyler Duffey has an ERA (4.57) virtually two runs larger than his cumulative whole of the earlier three seasons.
Mahle will assist shore up a rotation that has been ravaged by accidents, with Bailey Ober, Josh Winder, Chris Paddack, Kenta Maeda and Randy Dobnak all sidelined. The Twins acquired Mahle’s former teammate, Sonny Grey, in a March commerce with the Reds.
Baltimore acquired minor league pitchers Cade Povich, Yennier Cano, Juan Nunez and Juan Rojas from Minnesota for Lopez. Solely Cano has main league expertise, however Povich was a third-round draft choose final 12 months.
Cincinnati obtained the larger haul of minor leaguers — infielders Christian Encarnacion-Strand and Spencer Steer, and left-handed pitcher Steve Hajjar.
Together with 2021 first-rounder Chase Petty, who went to the Reds for Grey, the Twins have now traded 4 of their first 5 picks from final 12 months’s draft. Hajjar, Povich and Encarnacion-Strand went within the second, third and fourth rounds, respectively.
The stunning Orioles are within the combine for an AL wild card, simply 2½ video games out of the ultimate spot getting into play on Tuesday. However they traded slugger Trey Mancini to Houston as a part of a three-team deal on Monday earlier than transport Lopez to the AL Central leaders.
“This team, it was a little different than the last two, and I mean it a lot. These guys really take care of business, and that really taught me a lot,” Lopez said. “I really feel emotional, and I hope for achievement for everybody to only maintain going.”
The Twins underneath president of baseball operations Derek Falvey have most well-liked to keep away from short-term leases, sometimes prioritizing in trades gamers they’ll contractually management for greater than a 12 months, and Lopez satisfies that purpose.
“Just completely life-changing. I’m just really thankful for the Orioles and what they’ve been doing, and I’m glad it’s coming to a new chapter with the Minnesota Twins,” Lopez said on a conference call with reporters before a scheduled flight to Minnesota. “They have a extremely good group, and I will do something I can to maintain competing.”
Making $1.5 million this season, Lopez is arbitration-eligible in every of the following two winters and may’t turn into a free agent till after the World Sequence in 2024.
With 17 walks, 54 strikeouts and a .174 opponent batting common in 48⅓ innings, Lopez has produced fairly the turnaround after taking a 6.04 profession ERA into this season. He beforehand cut up his time between starter and reliever, however full-time concentrate on a late-game function has served him properly.
“When you get a new opportunity, you keep learning at your uncomfortable things,” Lopez stated. “Simply put your self within the place the place you possibly can simply keep optimistic and you are able to do this, so I am actually grateful for all of the onerous work we did. Simply cannot wait to get to this staff and do the identical factor.”
Lopez, who’s from Puerto Rico, beforehand pitched for Milwaukee and Kansas Metropolis. He was a second-round draft choose by the Brewers in 2011 and made his main league debut in 2015.
Cano, a 28-year-old right-hander from Cuba, made his main league debut in Might and was despatched again to Triple-A St. Paul on Monday. He had a 9.22 ERA in 10 appearances for the Twins and can report back to Triple-A Norfolk.
The 22-year-old Povich is 6-8 with a 4.46 ERA in 16 begins at Excessive-A Cedar Rapids this season. The left-hander is probably the most touted participant going to the Orioles, at the moment ranked because the No. 22 prospect within the Twins’ group by MLB.com. He will Excessive-A Aberdeen.
The 18-year-old Rojas and the 21-year-old Nunez have been assigned to the Orioles’ staff within the Florida Complicated League.