Thursday's MLB: Twins get Paddack, Pagan from Padres for Rogers and Rooker
Minneapolis — The Minnesota Twins have acquired right-handed pitchers Chris Paddack and Emilio Pagán from the San Diego Padres for All-Star left-handed pitcher Taylor Rogers and outfielder Brent Rooker.
The Twins also will receive a player to be named later and the Padres will get $6.6 million in cash under terms of the deal announced Thursday.
Paddack and Rogers are the key pieces of the deal.
Paddack posted a 7-7 record with a 5.07 ERA in starting 22 of his 23 appearances. The 26-year-old walked 22, struck out 99 last season. He has pitched in parts of three seasons for the Padres since 2019, going 20-19 with a 4.21 ERA.
Pagán made a career-high 67 relief appearances last season, going 4-3 with a 4.83 ERA. The 30-year-old has pitched parts of five major league seasons with Seattle, Oakland, Tampa Bay and San Diego, going 13-10 with a 3.73 ERA. He saved 20 games for the Rays in 2019.
Rogers was selected to his first career American League All-Star team in 2021, going 2-4 with a 3.35 ERA and a 13.17 strikeout-per-9.0 innings pitched, sixth highest among American League relievers and 10th-best in the majors. The 31-year-old began the season as the Twins’ primary set-up man, finishing with eight holds on the season, while also converting nine of his 13 save opportunities. Since 2016, his 319 appearances rank fourth in the American League and first most among AL left-handers
Rogers went on the injured list for the season on July 27 with a left middle finger sprain.
Rooker split the 2021 season between Triple-A St. Paul and Minnesota. He played in 58 games for the Twins last season, hitting .201 with 10 doubles, nine home runs and 16 RBI.
Pirates sign 3B Ke'Bryan Hayes to 8-year deal
The Pittsburgh Pirates are building around third baseman Ke'Bryan Hayes.
A person with knowledge of the agreement tells The Associated Press the Pirates and Hayes have come to terms on a new eight-year, $70 million deal pending the 25-year-old Hayes passing a physical. The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because a formal announcement isn't expected until the team's home opener on April 12.
Hayes was scheduled to hit third in Pittsburgh's season opener in St. Louis on Thursday.
The deal gives the team some stability as they continue a methodical build-up under general manager Ben Cherington. Hayes, the son of former major leaguer Charlie Hayes and a first-round pick in the 2015 amateur draft, reached the big leagues in 2020.
Hayes entered the 2022 season hitting .280 in 120 career games. Known for his strong defensive play, Hayes made a splash upon his arrival in September 2020, winning Rookie of the Month during an electric debut but struggled with a left wrist injury that limited him in 96 games in 2021.
The contact also gives a fan base growing antsy after three straight last-place finishes a player to attach itself to. The Pirates are still in a transition period, with most of the prospects they've accumulated since Cherington took over in the fall of 2019 still at least a year or two from arriving in Pittsburgh.
The Pirates are expected to finish at or near the bottom of the NL Central again with a largely unheralded and inexpensive roster. Cherington has said repeatedly that the team will start making investments when it believes it is close to winning, and the agreement with Hayes provides the first tangible evidence of a long-term plan at the big-league level.
The contract, which goes into effect this season carries through at least 2029 and includes an option for 2030.
Guardians announce 5-year contract with Clase on opening day
Kansas City, Mo. — The Cleveland Guardians began opening day Thursday by making official a $20 million, five-year contract with Emmanuel Clase, ensuring one of the breakout stars of the rechristened club will be closing games for the foreseeable future.
The deal, which was agreed to over the weekend, includes club options for 2027 and 2028 worth $10 million each.
“I just want to thank God for this opportunity, but also to the Guardians for this opportunity, to become what I always wanted to be — that was a closer,” Clase said through a translator, shortly before Cleveland opened the season against the Royals. “This is a great way to secure my family and guarantee I will compete with this team for a long time.”
Clase missed the entirety of the COVID-19-shortened 2020 season after being suspended for the use of performance-enhancing drugs. But the 24-year-old closer was dominant in 71 appearances as a rookie last season, striking out 74 in just 69 2/3 innings while recording 24 saves with a paltry 1.29 ERA.
“We were really excited that we were able to reach an agreement with Emmanuel,” said Chris Antonetti, the Guardians' president of baseball operations. “We felt he established himself as one of the best relievers in baseball last year, and you know, he'll be a core part of our bullpen moving forward.”
The Guardians approached Clase about a deal last season, and talks were moving briskly forward when baseball's lockout hit. They resumed with a new collective-bargaining agreement, and Clase decided take the financial security of a long-term deal in exchange for his arbitration years and potentially his first two years of free agency.
“You know, to have a successful bullpen, we need a lot of arms out there that are capable of generating outs,” Antonetti said, “but to be able to have someone out there like Emmanuel and hopefully stabilize the back end is a really good starting point.”