Cubs trade Sean Marshall to Reds for Travis Wood, Dave Sappelt, and Ronald Torreyes

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UPDATE: It’s a done deal.

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It’s been a couple days since the Cubs and Reds reportedly agreed to a deal that would send Sean Marshall from Chicago to Cincinnati for Travis Wood and two unnamed prospects, and now Keith Law of ESPN.com says the trade will be announced at some point today.

Law also has the details, reporting that the Cubs will receive prospects Dave Sappelt and Ronald Torreyes in addition to Marshall, who’s expected to fill a setup role in Cincinnati despite the Reds’ current lack of a closer.

Marshall has emerged as one of the league’s elite relievers since moving to the bullpen full time in 2010, throwing 150 innings with a 2.45 ERA and 169/42 K/BB ratio. He’s the best player in the deal, but is also just one season away from free agency.

Wood’s upside isn’t as high, but he projects as a solid mid-rotation starter and at age 24 is under team control through 2016. Neither Torreyes nor Sappelt were among the Reds’ top 10 prospects according to Baseball America, so the swap is definitely built around Marshall for Wood, but Sappelt is an MLB-ready outfielder and Torreyes is a 19-year-old infielder who posted some big numbers at Single-A.

If the Reds can get Marshall signed beyond 2012 that would change things, but from the Cubs’ point of view getting a young, cheap mid-rotation starter and a pair of solid prospects for a reliever one year away from free agency is pretty nice work.

Anthony Alford to miss 4-6 weeks following wrist surgery

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Blue Jays’ outfielder Anthony Alford will miss at least 4-6 weeks after undergoing surgery on his left wrist, the team announced on Saturday. Alford was placed on the 10-day disabled list earlier in the week after sustaining a left hamate fracture on a foul pitch, and could miss significant time in what looks to be a lengthy rehab process. MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm reports that the procedure has been scheduled for next week and will be performed by Dr. Donald Sheridan in Arizona.

Alford, 22, was called up to the majors from Double-A New Hampshire last Friday. He went hitless in his first three outings, finally catching a break against the Brewers on Tuesday when he pinch-hit a leadoff double in the seventh. The injury occurred two innings later when Alford fouled off a pitch in the ninth inning, fracturing his wrist in the process.

Alford will join eight other players on the Blue Jays’ disabled list, including outfielders Steve Pearce (calf strain), Dalton Pompey (concussion) and Darrell Cecillani (partial shoulder dislocation). He’s expected to be replaced by 24-year-old outfield prospect Dwight Smith Jr.

Stephen Strasburg hit a new career high today

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Good luck getting a hit against the Nationals this weekend. Stephen Strasburg followed Max Scherzer‘s 13-strikeout performance on Friday with a dazzling outing of his own on Saturday afternoon. The right-hander whiffed a career-best 15 batters in seven innings, allowing just three hits and a walk in the Nats’ 3-0 win.

It took Strasburg several innings to get into a groove after pitching into (and out of) a jam in the first inning. The Padres loaded the bases with Allen Cordoba‘s leadoff single, a throwing error by Ryan Zimmerman and a four-pitch walk to Cory Spangenberg. By the third, Strasburg was cruising, striking out the side on 18 pitches and keeping the Padres off the basepaths until the sixth. He recorded his 15th and final strikeout in the seventh inning, catching Padres’ prospect Franchy Cordero swinging on a 1-2 pitch to effectively end his outing.

While 15 strikeouts set a new career record for the Nationals’ ace, he came close to reaching the mark twice before. The first time, he struck out 14 of 24 batters during his major league debut against the 2010 Pirates, though the 5-2 win did little more than keep the Nationals neck-and-neck with the Marlins at the bottom of the NL East. Five years later, he tied his 14-strikeout record against the 2015 Phillies, tossing a one-hitter in eight innings to cement his ninth victory of the season.

The only one who doesn’t seem overly enthused by the new record? Strasburg himself, who told MLB.com’s Jamal Collier and AJ Cassavell: “It’s pretty cool, but there’s another game five, six days from now. I’ll enjoy it tonight, but back to work tomorrow.”