The Reds trade yet another starting pitcher as Tyler Mahle is headed to join former teammate Sony Gray in Minnesota.
Minnesota acquires a much-needed starter in Mahle. The 27-year-old has been an underrated pitcher across the league for a few seasons now. While his surface numbers might not look great, pitching in Great American Ballpark has not done him any favors. His career home ERA is 5.02 and his away ERA is 3.74.
Not only does Mahle add talent to an underwhelming rotation, but he comes with an additional year of team control. The starting pitching market was drying up, especially for players with upside. Mahle will immediately be inserted near the top of Minnesota’s rotation.
As for the return, Cincinnati gets back two infielders and a starting pitcher. Spencer Steer is a 24-year-old second baseman/ third basemen who could slide into the Reds lineup today. He is Rule-5 eligible in December, so the Reds will need to add him to the 40-man roster before then.
Christian Encarnacion-Strand slashed .296/.370/.599 with 20 home runs in 330 plate appearances in High-A before getting the call to Double-A. The third baseman has plenty of power and could be in line to factor in at first once Joey Votto retires.
Lastly, Steve Hajjar, a 21-year-old lefty, comes over to the Reds system with a 14.63 K/9 and 2.47 ERA in 2022. The Reds add another lefty starter to their organization, something they now have plenty of.
Overall, this trade is great for both teams. The Twins get a starter with control without having to give up their top prospects. Cincinnati brings in a player in Steer who can immediately slot into the lineup.