Yankees trade Manny Banuelos to the Braves for a pair of pitchers

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Jack Curry of the YES Network reports that the Yankees have traded pitcher Manny Banuelos to the Braves for pitchers David Carpenter and Chasen Shreve.

Banuelos, 23, signed with the Yankees in 2008 and was a consensus top prospect entering the 2011 and ’12 seasons. He missed all of the 2013 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery on his left elbow in October 2012, and hasn’t posted great results since. This past season, he compiled a 4.11 ERA with a 71/31 K/BB ratio in 76 2/3 innings between Single-A Tampa, Double-A Trenton, and Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Carpenter, 29, is entering his first year of arbitration eligibility. The right-hander has been a reliable reliever for the Braves over the last two seasons, posting a 2.63 ERA with a 141/36 K/BB ratio in 126 2/3 innings.

Shreve, 24, made his major league debut for the Braves in July, enjoying a stint of a week and a half in the show. He returned in September when rosters expanded, finishing the year with a 0.73 ERA and a 15/3 K/BB ratio in 12 1/3 innings. In the minors, where he spent most of his season, Shreve owned a 2.67 ERA and an 87/12 K/BB ratio in 64 innings, most of which came with Double-A Mississippi.

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.