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Royals Trade Aaron Crow to the Marlins

The former first rounder is now a Marlin

Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Per Ken Rosenthal, Aaron Crow is now a Marlin. The weather is nicer in Miami anyways.

Crow was the Royals 1st round pick (12th overall) in 2009 in a draft that wasn't considered entirely deep at the time except for some front end talent in Stephen Strasburg and Dustin Ackley. The same draft of course unearthed the grade zero diamond known as Mike Trout.

Crow's time as a Royal was timid to me. He wobbled between future starter/reliever for some time. Crow pitched exclusively as a starter in his brief minor league time but made his MLB debut from the bullpen. He enjoyed a successful first two seasons, but eventually struggled heavily with his command and his strikeout rate dropped.

Crow's expected arbitration per MLBTR was $2M this year in what would be his second arbitration eligible season.

In return from the Marlins, the Royals receive a pair of pitchers. Left hander Brian Flynn and right hander Reid Redman.

Flynn attended Wichita State and was drafted by the Tigers in the 7th round of the 2011 draft. He posted moderate but not spectacular numbers throughout his time in the minors averaging 7.5 strikeouts per 9 and a walk rate of 2.8. Eventually he was flipped to the Marlins in the deal that sent Omar Infante and Anibal Sanchez to the Tigers.

Flynn was ranked as the Marlins 9th best prospect by BP in 2013. BP has several comments about him collectively:

The big left-hander took somewhat of a step back this past season, primarily driven by inconsistent command, but when Flynn is staying on top of the ball and finishing his delivery, his four-pitch mix shows plenty of crispness. Standing 6-foot-7, there's a lot of body to control, which puts an emphasis on the 24-year-old being mindful of keeping his mechanics in check. The overall repertoire is more solid average than plus, but the lefty is capable of creating tough angles on hitters and pounding the zone. The profile can play up to a back-end starter in the right situation, with the clear line of sight pointing towards a potential relief option should Miami choose to go in that direction this coming summer.

Scouting Take: Flynn, a former seventh-round draft pick (2011) out of Wichita State, was one of the pieces the Marlins acquired at last season's trade deadline in the Anibal Sanchez/Omar Infante trade, and is the last of the trio to make it to the majors (following Rob Brantly and Jacob Turner). The 6'8", 240-pound left-hander has seen his strikeout rates spike this season, precipitating a rise through the Marlins system that saw him start the season in Double-A Jacksonville and end it at Marlins Park pitching in front of a similar-sized crowd. He has good control for a tall pitcher and features a low-90s fastball with a good downward plane to go with a pair of usable off-speed pitches-a slider and changeup-and a show-me curveball. The improvement in his changeup is what helped him jump from striking out 7.0 batters per nine innings in 2012 to 8.2 in the 2013 season, and it gives him a chance to stick as a back-end starter. He should compete with Henderson Alvarez, Tom Koehler, and others for a spot in the back of the Marlins rotation next season. -Jeff Moore

Flynn can execute a four-pitch mix from the left side, and with his size and strike-throwing, profiles has a backend starter at the major-league level. Its more control than command, and without improved stuff, the ceiling isn't much higher than the floor, which is an unexceptional long reliever. Assuming the control he showed in the upper minors returns, he should be able to spot his fastball, keep hitters off balance with his secondary stuff, and chew some innings in back of the rotation role.

Flynn has seen only 25 innings in the major leagues and posted a 5.39 FIP and 7.56/5.76 K/%BB% rate.

Redman was a 23rd round pick out of Texas Tech in 2012 by the Tampa Bay Rays as a second baseman. He lasted only one season as a professional hitter as the Rays released him in the spring training after his debut. As he began to drive home to Texas a scout from the Marlins organization called him and asked him to tryout for them as a pitcher rather than a hitter.

Upon conversion, Redman pitched exclusively out of the bullpen and as a part time closer. While old for pretty much every level, Redman has a compiled a 9.3 K/9 and 2.1 B/9 through the minors with a 2.00 ERA.

Neither of the return pieces present anything particularly special. Redman could max out as a middle relief guy and Flynn may be a back end starter or setup pitcher. For Aaron Crow though I think that's a decent return. His time in KC was never as high as expected by some to be (for a 1st round pick), and he is likely only set to see pay raises every year if we was continually tendered an offer.

Crow will now pitch in the NL East and get a chance to play the team that first drafted him, the Nationals, with more regularity. I saw Aaron Crow at the Plaza Quiktrip in October and if I knew he was about to be traded I would have said goodbye.