Rays Trade Odorizzi To The Minnesota Twins, Receive Prospect In Return

Odorizzi Heads North To Minnesota

Tampa Bay Rays, Boston Red Sox
AP Photo/Steve Nesius

The Tampa Bay Rays have traded pitcher Jake Odorizzi to the Minnesota Twins for minor league shortstop Jermaine Palacios.

Odorizzi, 27, is coming off a season in which he went 10-8 with a 4.14 ERA (66-ER/143.1-IP). He struck out 8.0-batters per nine innings, walked 3.8-batters per nine, and allowed 30 HR (1.9 HR/9).

He was due to make $6.3MM in 2018 and is under team control through the 2019 season.

Palacios, 21, split last season between Class-A Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers. Overall, he hit .296/.333/.454 with 21 doubles, 10 triples, 13 homers, and added 20 stolen bases.

He was selected to the Midwest League All-Star Team but did not play, and was promoted to Fort Myers on June 23. Following the season, he was named to the Twins Organizational All-Star Team by MLB.com.

Palacios was signed as an international free agent out of Venezuela on September 6, 2013. Over four minor league seasons, he has hit .290/.345/.426 with 63 doubles, 23 triples, 17 home runs, 161 RBI and 46 stolen bases.

According to Kyle Glaser of Baseball America,

“Palacios shows an all-fields approach and handles velocity fine, but rarely walks and has had to put in extra work to improve his pitch recognition. Most of his homers come on mistake breaking balls.
Defensively Palacios has above-average arm strength and moves better to his right, which gives him a chance to stay at shortstop as he climbs the ladder. An average runner at best, he lacks base-stealing instincts was successful on just 57 percent of his attempts last year. 
Palacios will begin his Rays career at either high Class A Port Charlotte or Double-A Montgomery in 2018. He projects as a potential utility infielder only if he continues to make contact.”

The trade of Odorizzi caps a night in which the team picked up C.J. Cron in a deal with the Los Angeles Angels for a player to be named later. To make room on the 40-man roster for Cron, the Rays designated for assignment Corey Dickerson.

The trimming of payroll should come as no surprise to Rays fans who have heard through much of the off-season that ownership wanted to get the payroll to at or near Opening Day 2017 ($70MM). Currently, the opening day payroll projects somewhere in the neighborhood of $72MM.

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