Pirates acquire Chris McGuiness from Rangers

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Pittsburgh picked up first baseman Chris McGuiness from Texas in exchange for Triple-A reliever Miles Mikolas.

Gaby Sanchez is around as the Pirates’ right-handed-hitting fallback option at first base in case they fail to land one of their primary targets and now they’ve acquired a left-handed-hitting first baseman in McGuiness to potentially platoon with him.

McGuiness hit just .246 with 11 homers and a .792 OPS in 104 games at Triple-A last season and also got into 10 games for the Rangers in his MLB debut at age 25. He has good on-base skills thanks to plenty of walks, but McGuiness is a career .257 hitter in the minors and lacks ideal power for the position.

Yankees trade Chase Headley, Bryan Mitchell to the Padres for Jabari Blash

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The New York Yankees have traded third baseman Chase Headley and pitcher Bryan Mitchell to the San Diego Padres for outfielder Jabari Blash. Joel Sherman of the New York Post was the first to report the trade. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic was the first to report that Blash was coming back in return.

Headley, a third baseman, hit .273/.352/.406 for the Yankees last year. He, of course, played for the Padres from 2007 through the middle of 2014, when he was dealt to New York. Mitchell has pitched 48 games for the Yankees, most from the pen, over four seasons, with an ERA of 4.94 in 98.1 innings. He doesn’t strike out many and he walks a lot. He throws hard.

Blash, an outfielder, has hit .200/.323/.336 with eight homers in 279 big league plate appearances. Blash has shown a lot of power potential in the minors, but has not yet put it together in the bigs. Given what the Yankees have in their outfield at the moment, he’s going to be organizational depth or, perhaps, a chit in a future trade.

This would seem to be an exercise in salary clearing by the Yankees in anticipation of another move, as it takes about $13 million off of their payroll. Which is about how much was added to their payroll for 2018 in the Giancarlo Stanton deal. That could get Todd Frazier back for them, perhaps. Or it could help them retain CC Sabathia or go after another starting pitcher. The club likewise maintains an interest in getting under the $197 million payroll threshold which would trigger yet another year of 50% luxury tax payments for the Yankees.