Cardinals trade Marc Rzepczynski to Indians

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Marc Rzepczynski was demoted back to Triple-A after a 48-hour stay with the Cardinals and now Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch reports that the left-hander will be traded to the Indians.

Rzepczynski was a big part of the Cardinals’ bullpen after they acquired him from the Blue Jays in mid-2011, but he fell out of favor last season and has spent most of this year in the minors.

No word yet on what the Cardinals are getting in return, but it’s unlikely to be more than a low-level prospect.

UPDATE: It’s now official and St. Louis gets minor league infielder Juan Herrera in return. He’s a 20-year-old playing at low Single-A, but has shown some on-base skills and plays shortstop.

Ex-Angels employee charged in overdose death of Tyler Skaggs

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FORT WORTH, Texas — A former Angels employee has been charged with conspiracy to distribute fentanyl in connection with last year’s overdose death of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs, prosecutors in Texas announced Friday.

Eric Prescott Kay was arrested in Fort Worth, Texas, and made his first appearance Friday in federal court, according to Erin Nealy Cox, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. Kay was communications director for the Angels.

Skaggs was found dead in his hotel room in the Dallas area July 1, 2019, before the start of what was supposed to be a four-game series against the Texas Rangers. The first game was postponed before the teams played the final three games.

Skaggs died after choking on his vomit with a toxic mix of alcohol and the powerful painkillers fentanyl and oxycodone in his system, a coroner’s report said. Prosecutors accused Kay of providing the fentanyl to Skaggs and others, who were not named.

“Tyler Skaggs’s overdose – coming, as it did, in the midst of an ascendant baseball career – should be a wake-up call: No one is immune from this deadly drug, whether sold as a powder or hidden inside an innocuous-looking tablet,” Nealy Cox said.

If convicted, Kay faces up to 20 years in prison. Federal court records do not list an attorney representing him, and an attorney who previously spoke on his behalf did not immediately return a message seeking comment.