Cardinals trade Mitchell Boggs to the Rockies

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Mitchell Boggs was one of the best setup men in baseball last season and got the first crack at closer this year in St. Louis after Jason Motte underwent Tommy John surgery. But he allowed 21 hits and 20 runs in 14 2/3 innings and has now been traded to the Rockies for international signing money.

This according to MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch.

Boggs was sent to Triple-A Memphis for good at the end of May and posted a 5.70 ERA and 1.73 WHIP in 23 2/3 innings there, but he had a 3.08 ERA (124 ERA+) in 201 1/3 frames between 2010 and 2012, and could certainly round back into form with time. The right-hander is 29 years old and he does have past experience as a starting pitcher in both the minors and majors.

“We wish Mitchell all the best,” Cardinals GM John Mozeliak said in a written statement. “He is a tremendous individual who provided many contributions to the organization’s success.”

Joey Votto: “I tried to get fatter. I succeeded at that apparently.”

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We’ve poked fun often at the spring training trope of players showing up to camp in the “best shape of [their] life.” Reds first baseman Joey Votto has turned that entirely on its head. Talking about his offseason, the 2010 NL MVP said, “I tried to get fatter. I succeeded at that apparently. We did all the testing and I am fatter,” Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Votto, of course, wasn’t trying to say he’s not in shape; he was just using some of his trademark self-deprecating humor.

Votto did get serious when discussing the state of the rebuilding Reds. As Buchanan also reported, Votto said, “I think we’re starting to get to the point where people are starting to get tired of this stretch of ball. I think something needs to start changing and start going in a different direction. I’m going to do my part to help make that change.”

Votto, 34, is under contract with the Reds through at least 2023, so he still has plenty of incentive to help see the rebuild through. He has been nothing short of stellar over the last three seasons. This past season, he hit .320/.454/.578 with 36 home runs, 100 RBI, and 106 runs scored in 707 appearances across all 162 games. Votto led the majors in walks (134) and on-base percentage and led the National League in OPS (1.032).

Despite Votto’s presence, both FanGraphs and PECOTA are projecting the Reds to put up a 74-88 record. The club had a pretty quiet offseason, expecting to enter 2018 with largely the same roster as last year.