Archer Heading To Pirates

The Tampa Bay Rays are reported to have a deal in place that would send pitcher Chris Archer to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

According to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times, the Rays would receive a package that includes outfielder Austin Meadows and pitcher Tyler Glasnow.

UPDATE 4:30 P.M.: Rays manager Kevin Cash announced the trade sending Archer to the Pirates in exchange for Meadows, Glasnow and a player to be named later.

Archer, who turns 30 on September 26, finishes his Rays career with a record of 54-68, including a 3-5 mark with a 4.31 earned run average in 17 starts.  The two-time All-Star pitched 1,063 innings in a Rays uniform, finishing with a 3.69 career ERA and 1,146 strikeouts.

The release from the team confirming the deal is below.


ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Rays have traded right-handed pitcher Chris Archer to the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for right-handed pitcher Tyler Glasnow, outfielder Austin Meadows and a player to be named.

Archer, 29, departs the Rays after seven seasons, going 54-68 with a 3.69 ERA (1,063-IP, 436-ER) in 179 appearances (177 starts). He was the first pitcher in Rays history to make four consecutive Opening Day starts (2015-18), and tied James Shields (2008-10, 2012) for the most Opening Day starts in club history. Archer ranks second in club history with 1,146 strikeouts, behind Shields (1,250), and ranks second in starts, third in innings pitched and fourth in wins.

Archer has made at least 30 starts in four straight seasons (2014-17), joining Shields (2007-12) as the only two Rays pitchers ever to do so. He is one of five major league pitchers to throw at least 200 innings in each of the previous three seasons. Since June 1, 2013—the date he was recalled to the majors for good—his 173 starts rank second in the majors, just one start shy of Max Scherzer (174). His 1,110 strikeouts over that span rank fifth in the majors, trailing Scherzer (1,429), Chris Sale (1,395), Corey Kluber (1,235) and Clayton Kershaw (1,155). He struck out a club-record 252 batters in 2015.

He is a two-time American League All-Star (2015, 2017) and pitched for Team USA in the 2017 World Baseball Classic. He was honored twice as the Rays nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award (2015, 2016) and by the Tampa Bay Chapter of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America as the Paul C. Smith Champion Award (2015), given to the player who best exemplifies the spirit of true professionalism on and off the field.

This season, Archer is 3-5 with a 4.31 ERA (96-IP, 46-ER) in 17 starts and spent 32 games on the disabled list with a left abdominal strain—the first DL stint of his career. He turns 30 on September 26.

Glasnow, 24, is 1-2 with a 4.34 ERA (56-IP, 27-ER) and 72 strikeouts in 34 appearances, all in relief, for the Pirates this season. He ranks third among National League relievers in strikeouts, behind Milwaukee’s Josh Hader (99) and Colorado’s Adam Ottavino (77). He has made 19 relief apps of 2 IP or more, most in the majors. He has pitched exclusively out of the bullpen this season after making 22 apps (17 starts) with the Pirates over the 2016-17 seasons.

Glasnow was ranked by Baseball America as a Top 50 prospect in the minors for four consecutive seasons (2014-17), including No. 16 entering the 2015 season and No. 14 entering the 2016 season. Over parts of six minor league seasons, he is 45-21 with a 2.02 ERA (593.1-IP, 133-ER) and 785 strikeouts in 118 apps (117 starts). He recorded 140 strikeouts in 93.1 innings with Triple-A Indianapolis in 2017, third in the International League behind Triple-A Durham’s Ryan Yarbrough (159) and Brent Honeywell (152). He was selected by the Pirates in the fifth round of the 2011 June Draft out of William S. Hart High School in Santa Clarita, Calif.—the same school that produced former Rays right-handed pitcher James Shields.

Meadows, 23, has appeared in 49 games (35 starts) over two stints with the Pirates this season, his first career major league action. He is batting .292/.327/.468 (45-for-154) with eight doubles, two triples, five home runs, 13 RBI and four stolen bases. Among National League rookies with at least 100 at-bats, he ranks third in batting avg. and slugging pct. He produced seven multi-hit games within his first 10 starts, batting .439 (18-for-41) with four home runs over that span. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, he became the fifth player to debut in the expansion era (since 1961) to hit .400 with at least four home runs within his first 40 at-bats, joining Albert Pujols, Jeff Francoeur, Brian Giles and Yasiel Puig.

Meadows was ranked by Baseball America as a Top 50 prospect in the minors for five consecutive seasons (2014-18), including No. 6 entering the 2017 season. He entered this season ranked by the publication as the Best Athlete and Best Strike-Zone Judgment in the Pirates organization. Over parts of six minor league seasons, he is batting .291/.355/.453 (484-for-1,665) with 110 doubles, 26 triples, 36 home runs, 207 RBI and 65 stolen bases. He was selected by the Pirates in the first round (ninth overall) of the 2013 June Draft out of Grayson High School in Loganville, Ga.

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