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Twins acquire Tyler Austin from Yankees for Lance Lynn

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Update (7:26 PM ET): The trade is official.

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Fancred’s Jon Heyman reports that the Twins have acquired first baseman Tyler Austin and minor league pitcher Luis Rijo from the Yankees in exchange for starter Lance Lynn. Lynn is owed the remainder of his $12 million salary, some of which the Twins will cover in the trade.

Austin, 26, has hit .223/.280/.471 with eight home runs and 23 RBI in 132 plate appearances this season for the Yankees. The Twins could choose to go with Austin full-time at first base next season if the club declines Logan Morrison‘s $8 million option for 2019. If the club picks up that option, Austin could platoon with Morrison. Austin will be under club control through 2022.

Rijo, 19, was signed by the Yankees as an international free agent out of Venezuela. He has pitched in rookie ball as well as Low-A Staten Island and High-A Tampa this season. Altogether, Rijo has posted a 2.77 ERA with 32 strikeouts and three walks in 39 innings of work.

Lynn, 31, got off to an abysmal start, carrying a 5.94 ERA through the end of May. He has turned things around since, compiling a 4.30 ERA in his last 10 starts. Still not great, but better. Overall, the veteran right-hander is 7-8 with a 5.10 ERA and a 100/62 K/BB ratio in 102 1/3 innings.

The Yankees already bolstered the back end of the rotation by acquiring J.A. Happ from the Blue Jays. It would seem Lynn would work in middle relief for the Yankees and serve as an emergency starter if needed.

Yasmani Grandal signs a four-year, $73 million deal with the White Sox

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The first truly big free agent signing of the offseason has gone down: the Chicago White Sox just announced that they have signed catcher Yasmani Grandal to a four-year, $73 million deal.

Grandal, 31, was the best catcher available in free agency. He is coming off a fine year with the Milwaukee Brewers, with whom he had to settle for a one-year pact in 2019. He hit .246/.380/.468 with 28 homers and 77 driven in. It was his fourth straight season with 20+ homers. While his catching has been criticized due to some high-profile mistakes in the postseason, the two-time All-Star once again proved himself to be one of the best pitch-framers in the game if not the best. Between the bat and the glove he has a claim to being one of the best all-around catchers in baseball.

The signing leaves open the question of what happens to James McCann, who was himself an All-Star this year. It’s not that hard a question, of course, as Grandal is a far superior catcher to McCann in every respect. The Sox could make McCann a backup. Alternatively, they could try to trade him to fill other holes on the roster.

The White Sox finished 72-89 in 2019 but are showing signs of coming out of rebuilding mode and into contention mode. This signing pushes them a big step into that direction.