Done Deal: Jake Westbrook to the Cardinals, Ryan Ludwick to the Padres

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A three-way deal has gone down between the Indians, the Cardinals and the Padres.  The breakdown:

  • The Indians send starter Jake Westbrook to the Cardinals;
  • The Cardinals send outfielder Ryan Ludwick to the Padres;
  • The Padres send prospects to the Cardinals and the Indians.  We’re not yet sure if this is all of them, but the Indians are getting AA pitcher Corey Kluber and the Cardinals are getting A-ball pitcher Nick Greenwood.

This
deal makes total sense for the Indians and Padres.  Cleveland unloads an expensive pitcher in exchange for young talent and the Padres get a much-needed bat (Ludwick is hitting .281/.343.484).  This addresses needs both clubs have.

It remains a bit of a head-scratcher for St. Louis. Yes, Westbrook — 6-7, 4.65 ERA, 1.154 WHIP — gives them a far more solid number four starter than they’ve had, so that’s good.  But still: this is a Cardinals offense that has been inconsistent all year and likely can’t afford to lose much pop.  I suppose it gives John Jay and everyday job, but the Cardinals are taking a bit of a roll of the dice on him.

The prospect heading to Cleveland — Corey Kluber — is a 24 year-old right-handed starter in AA. He strikes out more than a man per inning and seems to have pretty decent control.  He may be a find.  The fellow going to St. Louis — Nick Greenwood — is a 23 year-old lefty swingman, currently in his second go-around in high-A ball. Nice control, but nothing pops out at you.

Good deal for San Diego and Cleveland. The Cardinals? Well, they needed one bat and a starter before today. Now they need two bats.  Your mileage may vary as to whether that’s an improvement.

Kyle Gibson, Orioles finalize $10M, 1-year contract

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
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SAN DIEGO – Right-hander Kyle Gibson and the Baltimore Orioles finalized a $10 million, one-year contract on Monday.

The 35-year-old would receive a $150,000 assignment bonus if traded, payable by the receiving team. He also can earn a $25,000 bonus if he is elected or selected for the All-Star team. Gibson was an All-Star in 2021.

Gibson was 10-8 with a 5.05 ERA in 31 starts for Philadelphia last season. He also pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings in two relief appearances in the postseason for the NL champions.

Baltimore gained another experienced arm as it looks to build on its surprising season. After losing 110 games the previous year, the Orioles contended for an AL wild card for much of the summer before finishing 83-79 for the franchise’s first winning record since 2016.

Gibson was an AL All-Star in 2021, going 6-3 with a 2.87 ERA in 19 starts for Texas. He was traded to Philadelphia that July, and he went 4-6 with a 5.09 ERA in 12 appearances for the Phillies down the stretch.

The 6-foot-6 Gibson was selected by Minnesota in the first round of the 2009 amateur draft. He made his big league debut with the Twins in 2013.

He spent his first first seven seasons with Minnesota, going 67-68 with a 4.52 ERA in 193 games, including 188 starts. He had his best year in 2018, finishing with a career-low 3.62 ERA in a career-best 196 2/3 innings.

Gibson, who signed a $28 million, three-year contract with Texas in December 2019, is 89-91 with a 4.52 ERA in 267 major league games.