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Mets officially pick up Asdrubal Cabrera’s 2018 option


Confirming earlier reports, the Mets officially exercised Asdrubal Cabrera‘s $8.5 million option for 2018 on Friday. As Cabrera was due for a $2 million buyout, it effectively cost the team just $6.5 million to retain the veteran infielder.

Cabrera, 31, was booted from his regular post at shortstop as the Mets turned to top prospect Amed Rosario early in the year. Despite some rumblings about a potential trade, a deal never came to fruition and Cabrera split his remaining starts between second and third base. He finished the season batting .280/.351/.434 with 14 home runs and 1.3 fWAR, and his extraordinary second-half surge enticed the Mets to bring him back for an encore in 2018.

The club still has quite a few questions to resolve as they head into the offseason — namely, what to do with David Wright and where to stash Cabrera on a long-term basis. They’ll also have to make a decision on Jose Reyes, who is set to enter free agency this fall and looks like a backup infield option at best.

Report: Diamondbacks acquire Steven Souza from Rays in part of three-team deal

Tampa Bay Rays

Update (6:35 PM ET): This is a three-team deal also involving the Diamondbacks, per Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. The Diamondbacks will receive outfielder Steven Souza from the Rays and second baseman Brandon Drury will head to the Yankees. Lefty reliever Anthony Banda will go to the Rays, Piecoro adds. The Diamondbacks will also receive prospect Taylor Widener from the Yankees, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post.’s Steve Gilbert adds that the Rays will get two players to be named later from the D-Backs.

Souza, 28, is earning $3.55 million in his first of three years of arbitration eligibility, so the Rays are presumably saving money in moving him. Last season, Souza hit a productive .239/.351/.459 with 30 home runs, 78 RBI, 78 runs scored, and 16 stolen bases in 617 plate appearances. Souza’s arrival almost certainly pushes Yasmany Tomas out of a starting gig.

Drury, 25, has played a handful of positions in his brief major league career. Last year, he played second base in Arizona, batting .267/.317/.447 with 13 home runs and 63 RBI in 480 PA.

Banda, 24, made his major league debut last season, posting an ugly 5.96 ERA with a 25/10 K/BB ratio in 25 2/3 innings. The peripherals suggest he pitched better than his ERA indicated.

Widener, 23, was selected by the Yankees in the 12th round of the 2016 draft. This past season with High-A Tampa, he pitched 119 1/3 innings and posted a 3.39 ERA with a 129/50 K/BB ratio. MLB Pipeline rated Widener as the 14th-best prospect in the Yankees’ system.


Robert Murray of FanRag Sports reports that the Rays will acquire second base prospect Nick Solak from the Yankees. The Yankees’ return is presently not known.

Solak, 23, was selected by the Yankees in the second round of the 2016 draft. He spent last season between High-A Tampa and Double-A Trenton, hitting a combined .297/.384/.452 with 12 home runs, 53 RBI, 72 runs scored, and 14 stolen bases.

MLB Pipeline ranked Solak as the eighth-best prospect in the Yankees’ system and the fifth-best second base prospect in baseball, praising him for his ability to hit line drives as well as his speed.