BALTIMORE – Manny Machado will finish the 2018 season with the Los Angeles Dodgers after months of speculation finally came to an end earlier today.
As previously noted, Machado had been seriously linked to the Dodgers as far back as early-May when Corey Seager’s season ended.
— Dan Clark (@DanClarkSports) April 30, 2018
The supremely talented 26-year-old has been traded by the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for a big haul of prospects, including:
• Yusniel Diaz, OF
• Rylan Bannon, 3B
• Dean Kremer, RHP
• Zach Pop, RHP
• Breyvic Valera, INF
Of the haul, Diaz, the Dodgers’ no. 4 prospect, would fill Orioles fans with the most excitement. Still just 21-years-old, he is a reliable on-base threat who makes contact and commands the strike zone. He is unlikely to remain in center, though, and his power doesn’t project to be anything special. He did however hit two home runs in this week’s MLB Futures Game in Washington DC. On the season, Diaz is hitting .314/.428/.477 with Double-A Tulsa.
Bannon is a 22-year-old who is hitting .296 with an impressive .961 OPS at Class-A Rancho Cucamonga. He is also a plus defensive third baseman. Kremer is also a 22-year-old and he was recently promoted to Double-A Tulsa after striking out 114 in 79 innings at Rancho Cucamonga. Pop is a 21-year-old who was picked in the 7th Round last year. In 35 career relief appearances he is working to a 0.93 ERA and 0.87 WHIP and was recently promoted to Double-A Tulsa. Finally, Valera is a 26-year-old who has made 20 appearances with the Dodgers, hitting .172 in 29 at bats. He also appeared five times with the St Louis Cardinals in 2017, hitting .100 in 10 at bats.
The Dodgers beat out a long list of teams linked to Machado in recent weeks, most notably the Philadelphia Phillies, Milwaukee Brewers, and New York Yankees. In total, as many as 10 teams have reportedly been interested in the four-time All-Star. Earlier this week it had even been reported that a handshake agreement was in place between the Phillies and Orioles, however that rumor was quickly squashed by multiple Baltimore beat writers.
A free agent at the end of the 2018 season, Machado is closing in on 1,000 career hits (977) and has 162 home runs in 860 games with the Orioles since debuting in 2012. His freakish ability at third base however is what really sets him above the rest, although this has not been seen in 2018 after the Orioles respected his wishes to shift over to shortstop in a bid to enhance his value prior to inking a new deal at season’s end.
Whether or not the Dodgers can secure Machado long-term beyond 2018 remains to be seen, with fierce competition expected – most likely from the Yankees.
Other Orioles expected to be traded in the coming days include closer Zach Britton, and potentially outfielder Adam Jones too. Unlike Britton, Jones will have to OK the trade. Brad Brach has also been linked to numerous teams in search of solidifying their bullpens.