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Royals acquire Melky Cabrera from White Sox

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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.

Rockies, Trevor Story agree on two-year, $27.5 million contract

Trevor Story
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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.

Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.

This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.

With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.