The Kansas City Royals have acquired three pitchers from the San Diego Padres in Trevor Cahill, Brandon Maurer and Ryan Buchter. In exchange, the Padres will receive pitchers Travis Wood and Matt Strahm along with minor leaguer Esteury Ruiz.
The San Diego Padres have begun their fire sale. They will be looking to become younger and better, but did this trade do that? Travis Wood is 30 years old, is under contract through 2019 (mutual buyout option) and having a terrible year. In 41.2 innings of work he has a 6.91 ERA and has not made it past the 5th inning in the 3 games started for the Royals this year. Matt Strahm was put on the 60-Day DL by the Royals and will miss the rest of the season while he undergoes surgery to repair a torn patellar tendon in his left knee. He made his MLB debut last season for the Royals and pitched well. In 22 innings of work out of the bullpen he finished with a 1.23 ERA. This year for the Royals he did not have much success. He pitched in 24 games, while starting 3 of them and had a 2-5 record to go with a 5.45 ERA before he was lost for the season. Maybe down the road for the Padres he can be a decent arm out of the bullpen, but there is not much to get excited about when talking at Strahm. The most interesting piece of this trade for the Padres is 18-year old MIF Esteury Ruiz. In his two seasons (77 games) at the Rookie level, Ruiz has hit .343 with 8 homers and 49 runs batted in. Ruiz was not ranked inside of the Royals' top 30 prospects according to MLB.com, but he definitely has some promise.
Overall, I think the Royals win this deal. Travis Wood who has been terrible this season, Matt Strahm who won't pitch for the rest of the year and Esteury Ruiz is only 18 years old with a long road ahead of him before he makes any real impact. The Royals needed to help their pitching staff and they do so with this deal. The team ERA so far this season is at 4.25, which ranks 14th in the MLB. This is not terrible, but it is not ideal for a team that wants to make a playoff push either. Trevor Cahill should slide right into the Royals' rotation. The Royals currently have only two starters with an ERA under 4.00 and Cahill will become the third. He has started all 11 games he has appeared in this season and boasts a 4-3 record with a 3.69 ERA. Ryan Buchter will be a huge upgrade over Travis Wood as a lefty out of the bullpen. Butter has appeared in 42 games out of the pen this season and has a 3.05 ERA to go with 47 strikeouts in 38.1 innings of work. Brandon Maurer has served as the Padres' closer and has converted 20 saves on the season. However, his ERA is abysmal this year as it sits at 5.72 and he does not strikeout a lot of batters. He only have 38 strikeouts in 39.1 innings pitched. He definitely will not close for the Royals, but he will definitely have some sort of impact for them out of the bullpen.