The Dodgers and Mariners swapped some minor leaguers on Wednesday evening. The Dodgers announced the acquisition of infielder Drew Jackson and pitcher Aneurys Zabala from the Mariners in exchange for pitcher Chase De Jong.
Jackson, 23, was the Mariners’ top infield prospect according to MLB Pipeline. He was selected by the Mariners in the fifth round of the 2015 draft. Last year, at High-A Bakersfield, Jackson hit .258/.332/.345 with six home runs, 47 RBI, 87 runs scored, and 16 stolen bases in 598 plate appearances as a shortstop. Jackson is known for having plenty of speed and a strong arm.
Zabala, 20, spent last season with the Mariners’ rookie ball team. He made 16 relief appearances spanning 25 innings, putting up a 2.88 ERA with a 28/15 K/BB ratio. The Mariners signed him as an international free agent in April 2014.
De Jong, 23, was rated as the Dodgers’ 16th-best prospect and seventh-best pitching prospect by MLB Pipeline. The Blue Jays selected him in the second round of the 2012 draft. De Jong spent last year mostly with Double-A Tulsa, posting a 2.86 ERA with a 125/39 K/BB ratio in 141 2/3 innings. He was promoted to Triple-A Oklahoma City in September and made one solid start.
The Dodgers beat the Twins last night thanks to a Cody Bellinger three-run homer. But Bellinger was not the only Dodgers rookie who had a notable game. A far more unconventional one is worth mentioning as well.
That rookie is reliever Edward Paredes, who made his big league debut last night. What makes him unconventional: he’s 30. Turns 31 in September, actually. Paredes pitched professionally for 12 years before making it to The Show. Most of that time was in the affiliated minors in the Mariners, Indians, Angels and Dodgers organizations. He spent time in the independent Atlantic League in 2013-15 as well.
Paredes did not do anything heroic last night. It was more of a right place/right time kind of appearance, retiring the side in order with a fly out, line out and a ground out and remaining the pitcher of record while Bellinger hit that three-run homer. That’s enough for a W, though. A W that Paredes waited a lot longer for than most pitchers who notch one in the bigs.
Jon Morosi of MLB Network says that the Nationals could pursue Athletics right-hander Sonny Gray if Stephen Strasburg‘s forearm issue lingers. Strasburg left Sunday’s start early due to forearm tightness, saying he was unable to get loose. Sometimes that’s a sign of a major injury. Sometimes it’s just a thing that happens and then goes away.
The Nationals will have to make a determination as to how big a deal this all is pretty soon, though, as a lot of other teams, including the Yankees, Brewers and Astros have all been linked to Gray. It seems inevitable at this point that the A’s will move their ace before Monday’s trade deadline.
Gray is set to start tonight. It may very well be his last in an A’s uniform.