The Tampa Bay Rays have acquired 1B Lucas Duda from the New York Mets in exchange for RHP Drew Smith.
The Rays are actually contenders this year, and are looking to buy. Earlier today, they acquired LHP Dan Jennings. And now, they get Duda. After Colby Rasmus took a break from baseball for an unknown reason, and won\’t return this year, the Rays wanted another bat. With Tampa, Duda can DH, and Corey Dickerson can play the OF more. Duda is a nice, middle of the order guy with some left handed pop that can put some runs up on the board.
Duda, 31, has a .246 batting average, 17 homers and 37 RBIs in 291 Plate Appearances. In his eight year MLB career, all for the Mets, Duda has a .246 batting average, 125 homers and 378 RBIs in 2895 Plate Appearances.
Due to injuries, the Mets are having a surprisingly bad year in 2017. So, they\’ve been shopping guys like Duda and closer Addison Reed. They get a prospect in Smith, who was ranked by MLB Pipeline as the 30th best prospect in the Rays system for Duda, who is a free agent after this year.
Smith, a reliever touches 97 MPH on his fastball. He has a 1.60 ERA, 0.91 WHIP, seven saves and 40 strikeouts in 45 innings this year over three levels. In his minor league career, Smith has a 1.80 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 13 saves and 140 strikeouts in 124.2 innings.
I think this is an even trade. The Mets get a prospect for a guy they might not have signed at the end of the year. Plus, the Rays get a power bat in the lineup, so everybody wins.
For more about the trade, check out my YouTube video.