The Royals have acquired outfielder Melky Cabrera from the Chicago White Sox in exchange for pitchers A.J. Puckett and Andre Davis, according to Kansas City Star reporter Rustin Dodd. The 32-year old switch-hitter was batting .295/.336/.436 with 13 home runs in 98 games for the White Sox. The trade is the second deal in a week for the Royals, who picked up Trevor Cahill in a six-player trade with the Padres last Monday.
Cabrera is a poor defender, but the Royals will be getting him for his bat, having him fill in at designated hitter and left field to spell the struggling Brandon Moss and Alex Gordon and give more rest to Lorenzo Cain. Over the last four seasons, he has been one of the toughest hitters to strike out and he brings a high-average approach with good gap power for the Royals. Cabrera previously played for the Royals in 2011.
Melky Cabrera is in the last year of a three-year, $42 million deal. The Royals will pay $2.5 million of the $7 million remaining on his deal, according to MLB.com reporter Jeffrey Flanagan. The Royals were interested in bringing him back to Kansas City before he signed that deal.
Right-handed pitcher A.J. Puckett was a second-round pick for the Royals in 2016. The 22-year old Pepperdine grad had a 3.90 ERA in 20 starts for High A Wilmington with a good strikeout rate of 8.1 per-nine innings, but a high walk rate. Puckett was ranked 12th by Shaun Newkirk in our mid-season Royals prospect list. Left-handed pitcher Andre Davis was an eight-round pick in 2015 out of the University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff and had a 4.83 ERA in 18 starts for Low A Lexington.
To make room on the 40-man roster, the Royals have designated right-handed reliever Andrew Edwards for assignment.
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