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Giants beat the buzzer, pick up Matt Moore from the Rays

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Update #2 (4:23 PM EDT): The third player going to the Rays is Michael Santos, per Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports. Santos was rated #24 in the Giants’ system by MLB Pipeline.

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Update (4:21 PM EDT): The Rays are also expected to receive third baseman Matt Duffy and minor league infielder Lucius Fox. MLB Pipeline rated Fox as the Giants’ fourth-best prospect.

Duffy, 25, finished second in National League Rookie of the Year Award balloting last season, putting up a .762 OPS. He hasn’t been the same this year, putting up a meager .253/.313/.358 batting line with 17 extra-base hits, 21 RBI, and 32 runs scored in 286 plate appearances. Duffy has been sidelined since June 20 with a strained left Achilles.

Fox, 19, was rated the fourth-best prospect in the Giants’ system. In his professional debut with Single-A Augusta, he has hit .207/.305/.277 with 25 stolen bases in 331 plate appearances.

Chris Shaw was previously reported to have been included in this trade, but he is not, Jon Morosi clarifies. It’s Duffy, Fox, and an as yet unnamed player for Moore, per ESPN’s Buster Olney.

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The Giants made a move just ahead of the 4 PM EDT trade deadline buzzer, picking up lefty starter Matt Moore from the Rays, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post.

Moore, 27, posted a 4.08 ERA wtih a 109/40 K/BB ratio in 130 innings over 21 starts for the Rays this season. The lefty returned last year after recovering from Tommy John surgery.

Moore is earning $5 million this season and has club options for each of the next three seasons worth $7 million ($2.5 million buyout), $9 million ($1 million buyout), and $10 million ($750,000 buyout), respectively.

The Nationals have inquired about Kris Bryant

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The Washington Nationals, fresh off signing Stephen Strasburg to a $245 million deal, are now turning their attention to their third base hole. Jon Morosi of MLB.com reports that they have made inquiries to the Chicago Cubs about trading for Kris Bryant.

Emphasis on the word “inquiry” because it’d be premature for the Cubs to trade Bryant at the moment, even if they are reported to be considering the possibility.

Bryant and the Cubs are awaiting word from an arbitrator about Bryant’s years-old service time grievance. If Bryant wins, he becomes a free agent after the 2020 season. If the Cubs win they control him for two more years. The team may or may not choose to trade him in either case as they are reportedly trying to cut payroll, but the price for him will vary pretty significantly depending on whether or not the acquiring club will receive one or two years of control over the former MVP.

For Washington, this would be a means of replacing free agent third baseman Anthony Rendon. Or, perhaps, the inquiries are a means of creating a tad more leverage for the Nats as they talk to Rendon’s agent about re-signing him.

Which, in the past, the Nats said they could not do if they also re-signed Strasburg, though I suspect that’s just posturing too. They may not want to spend big money to keep their World Series core together, but they can afford it. They’re going to see, I suspect, an eight-figure uptick in revenue by virtue of being the defending World Series champs. They are poised to receive a significant payout as a result of recent rulings in their own multi-year dispute with the Orioles and the MASN network. They are, of course, owned by billionaire real estate moguls. All of that taken together means that, if they choose to, they can bring back Rendon. Assuming he chooses to come back too.

But, if that doesn’t happen, they appear to be giving themselves options at the hot corner.