Padres to acquire Blake Snell, 2018 AL Cy Young winner, in shocking trade with Rays: reports

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The San Diego Padres reportedly "have an agreement in place" to acquire Blake Snell from the Tampa Bay Rays in a shocking trade.

Snell, the 2018 American League Cy Young award winner, would be heading to the Padres from the Rays for Luis Patino, Francisco Mejia, Blake Hunt and Cole Wilcox, The Athletic and ESPN reported late Sunday night. The deal is pending a review of medical records.

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The Rays pitcher was rumored to be on the trade block earlier in the offseason after a solid coronavirus pandemic-shortened season and coming within two games of a World Series ring. He pitched in 10 innings in the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers, allowed three earned runs and struck out 18 batters.

During the season, Snell had a 3.24 ERA in 11 starts. He has been a part of the young Rays roster who has kept the team at the top of the division. Tampa Bay won the AL East in 2020 for the first time since 2010. Snell is likely due for a big raise and Tampa Bay isn’t exactly known for dishing out lucrative contracts.

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The Padres are reportedly sending a bunch of young players to the Rays.

Patino, 21, appeared in 11 games for San Diego in 2020. He had a 5.19 ERA and 21 strikeouts. Meijia, 21, already has appeared in 128 games over the last four years. Last season, the catcher only slashed .077/.143/.179 in 39 at-bats.

Hunt, a 22-year-old catcher, was in the Padres’ farm system and didn’t play in 2020 because of the pandemic. In 2019 at Class-A Fort Wayne, he hit .255 with five home runs. Cole Wilcox is a 21-year-old pitcher who was selected in the third round of the June draft. He had a 1.57 ERA in four games with Georgia in 2020 before the pandemic shut down the college baseball season.

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With the Snell acquisition, the Padres would immediately get an upgrade in the rotation. Snell is a premier pitcher heading to a pitcher’s ballpark and it would be interesting to see how dominant he can be in 2021 and beyond.

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