The Royals acquired White Sox’ outfielder Melky Cabrera and cash considerations in exchange for minor league right-hander AJ Puckett and left-hander Andre Davis, the team announced Sunday. Cabrera, 32, is set to enter free agency following the 2017 season.
This is Cabrera’s second stint with the team after he signed a one-year, $1.25 million deal with Kansas City in 2011. His breakout performance with the Royals established his prowess as a power hitter and set the stage for another impressive run with the Giants in 2012, albeit one that was shortened by a 50-game drug suspension. In 2017, he’ll return to the Royals as a seasoned slugger after slashing .295/.336/.436 with 13 home runs and a .771 OPS through 428 PA with the White Sox.
Puckett, 22, was ranked No. 4 in the Royals’ system (by Baseball Prospectus; Baseball America ranks him No. 5 and MLB Pipeline has him at No. 13) entering the 2017 season. He advanced to High-A Wilmington and found modest success on the mound, producing a 3.90 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.1 SO/9 over 108 1/3 innings.
Davis, 23, failed to crack the Royals’ top prospect rankings, and has seen mixed results with a 4.83 ERA, 2.4 BB/9 and 9.1 SO/9 through 85 2/3 innings in his first campaign with Single-A Lexington.