Angels get OF Renfroe from Brewers for 3 young pitchers

Washington Nationals v Milwaukee Brewers
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ANAHEIM, Calif. — The Los Angeles Angels acquired power-hitting outfielder Hunter Renfroe in a trade with the Milwaukee Brewers for three young pitchers.

Milwaukee received right-handers Janson Junk and Elvis Peguero, and minor league lefty Adam Seminaris.

Renfroe batted .255 with 29 home runs, 72 RBIs and an .807 OPS in 125 games this season, his first with the Brewers. He led major league right fielders with 11 assists and ranked 10th in the National League with a .492 slugging percentage.

“Obviously, it’s a productive player who’s done it year in and year out for a while,” Angels general manager Perry Minasian said on a Zoom conference with reporters. “It’s a quality two-way guy. Not only can he produce on the offensive side, he’s a quality defender. He can really throw. Just the total package. We felt like he was a really good fit for us.”

Renfroe, who turns 31 in January, is eligible for arbitration again and likely to get a raise after earning a $7.65 million salary this year. He can become a free agent after next season.

He joins an Angels team looking for offense to support superstars Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani in a top-heavy lineup that struggled overall this year. Los Angeles went 73-89 and finished third in the AL West.

Milwaukee, with a limited budget, was second in the NL Central at 86-76 and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2017 after four consecutive appearances.

Renfroe was drafted 13th overall by San Diego in 2013 and spent his first four big league seasons with the Padres. But the Angels will mark his fifth team in five years, including Tampa Bay (2020) and Boston (2021).

Junk, 26, spent most of the season with Triple-A Salt Lake but made three appearances for the Angels, including two starts. He was 1-1 with a 6.48 ERA in 8 1/3 innings.

The 25-year-old Peguero made 13 relief appearances for the Angels this season, compiling a 6.75 ERA in 17 1/3 innings. He pitched in 38 games for Salt Lake.

Seminaris, 24, was selected by the Angels in the fifth round of the 2020 draft out of Long Beach State. He made a combined 21 starts and three relief appearances this year with High-A Tri-City, Double-A Rocket City and Triple-A Salt Lake, going 7-11 with a 3.54 ERA. He’s struck out 209 batters in 185 minor league innings.

“We are happy to welcome three quality young arms to our organization, two of which are already on the major league roster and have a chance to impact our team in 2023,” Milwaukee general manager Matt Arnold said. “The ability to add pitching depth to an already strong stable of big league arms is something we feel good about.”

Milwaukee has several outfield prospects who could fill Renfroe’s spot after playing in Triple-A this season.

Garrett Mitchell, a 2020 first-round draft pick, was called up late in the season and had an .832 OPS in 23 games. Sal Frelick, Esteury Ruiz and Joey Wiemer all spent at least part of the season at Triple-A Nashville. Ruiz was acquired from San Diego in the deal for All-Star closer Josh Hader just before the trade deadline.

“We are very thankful to Hunter for all of his contributions, both on and off the field,” Arnold said. “While he will certainly be missed, this is an opportunity for our group of exciting young outfielders to impact our major league team in the near future.”

Phillies, RHP Taijuan Walker reportedly agree to 4-year deal

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SAN DIEGO – The active Philadelphia Phillies added Taijuan Walker to their rotation on Tuesday, agreeing to a $72 million, four-year contract with the right-hander.

A person familiar with the negotiations confirmed the move to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because it was pending a physical.

It was the second major free-agent score for the Phillies at the winter meetings after they reeled in shortstop Trea Turner on Monday with a $300 million, 11-year deal. Walker and Turner join a Phillies team that made it to the World Series this year before losing to the Houston Astros.

The 30-year-old Walker went 12-5 with a 3.49 ERA in 29 starts this season for the New York Mets, one of Philadelphia’s biggest NL East rivals. He slots into a rotation fronted by Zack Wheeler and Aaron Nola.

The Phillies recently lost pitcher Zach Eflin in free agency to Tampa Bay.

Asked about the market for Walker earlier in the day, agent Scott Boras said it was robust.

“As you can see in the marketplace, there’s a whole number of pitchers that are throwing 60 and 70 innings that have been pursued, probably with the exception of (Jacob) deGrom, at the lower end of threshold around $13-15 million a year because the demand for quality pitching is so great,” Boras said.

“So, Tai … is one of the younger ones, one of the more durable ones and we expect him to be pursued greatly as his market unfolds.”

Walker was selected by Seattle with the No. 43 pick in the 2010 amateur draft. He made his big league debut with the Mariners in 2013.

Walker signed with New York as a free agent in February 2021. He turned down a $7.5 million player option last month in favor of a $3 million buyout, making his deal worth $17 million over two seasons.

The 6-foot-4 Walker made the All-Star team for the first time in 2021, putting together a fast start before fading to a 7-11 record with a 4.47 ERA in 30 games, 29 starts.