The Angels have bolstered their pitching staff by acquiring the top pitcher on the market, acquiring Zack Greinke from the Brewers. The deal will sent shortstop Jean Segura along with a pair of AA pitchers to Milwaukee, reports Ken Rosenthal.
The writing was on the wall yesterday, when Brewers GM Doug Melvin said that Greinke would be dealt. I don't think any of us expected that he'd be dealt so quickly, however. The 28-year old Greinke has a 3.44 ERA in 21 starts this year, striking out nearly a batter per inning and striking out four times as many hitters as he's walked. He'll join an Angels rotation headed by CJ Wilson and Jered Weaver, both of whom are signed long-term and making a hell of a lot of money, with the struggling duo of Dan Haren and Ervin Santana at the back-end of the bullpen.
The only confirmed name heading to the Brewers is Segura, who ranked as the organization's #2 prospect coming into the year. In 94 games in AA this year, the 22-year old Segura has a .750 OPS, homering seven times and stealing 33 bases. Scouts expect Segura to man third base in the majors, but he'll probably slot in at shortstop just fine for the Brewers right now, who have used a revolving cast at the position since Alex Gonzalez blew his knee out earlier this season.
Talking to our resident Angels fans on staff, Garrett Wilson and Scotty Allen of Monkey With A Halo, they believe that the two pitchers going to the Brewers in the deal are AA pitchers Ariel Pena and John Hellweg, and Keith Law of ESPN seems to agree (autocorrect aside). The 23-year old Pena ranked as the Angels' ninth best prospect coming into the year, and this season in AA, he has a 2.99 ERA in 19 starts, striking out 111 and walking 42. Pena already has command of three pitches, and will probably be on the fast track to Milwaukee. Hellweg was the fourth ranked Angels prospect coming into the season, and the 23-year old has seemingly taken a step back in AA this year, with his strikeout rate sitting at a career low 6.62, and his walk at a still too high 4.51. Hellweg has hit triple digits on the gun withi his fastball, and has the potential to be a #2 starter if his control improves.
All in all, you couldn't have asked for a better package for the Brewers in exchange for Greinke. It was probably too much for the Angels to give up in the deal, but the market for Greinke was very competitive, and they absolutely needed to step their offer up if they wanted to land the righty.
UPDATE: Rosenthal confirms that Pena & Hellweg are the other two players. Wow. Great deal for Milwaukee.
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