The St. Louis Cardinals addressed their glut of outfielders on Friday by trading Randal Grichuk to Toronto in return for right-handed pitchers Dominic Leone and Conner Greene.
Prior to the 2016 season, it appeared that Randal Grichuk would only be remembered for being drafted one spot ahead of the great Mike Trout, but the veteran outfielder has proven that he is a Major League caliber player, and a true asset in the outfield. In 2017, the 26-year-old cranked 22 home runs with 59 RBI in 442 plate appearances.
Grichuk will make $2.8 Million in 2018, and will be eligible for arbitration for the next two years before becoming eligible for free agency.
The 26-year-old reliever Dominic Leone is coming off of a solid 2017 season with Toronto, in which he went 3-0 with a 2.56 ERA (12th among AL relievers), 81 strikeouts, and 11 holds in 65 games (70 1/3 innings).
The 22-year-old Conner Greene went 5-10 with a 5.29 ERA in 2017 playing for Double-A New Hampshire. He also had 92 strikeouts in 132 2/3 innings while amassing 25 starts in 26 games. Greene received Eastern League All-Star honors and was ranked the fifth-best prospect in the Toronto organization by Baseball America in 2017.
The Cardinals did not have enough room to keep Grichuk on their team in 2018, with an absolutely stacked outfield consisting of Tommy Pham, Dexter Fowler, and the newly acquired Marcell Ozuna. This move was simply based upon supply and demand, with the Cardinals needing pitching and to get rid of an outfielder, and the Blue Jays needing another quality outfielder.
All in all, this was a good deal for both teams and it has given us baseball fans some faint signs that Hot Stove will heat up sooner or later.