Tyler Mahle Traded to Twins from Reds for 3 Prospects in Deadline Deal

Adam WellsAugust 2, 2022

AP Photo/Jay LaPrete

The Cincinnati Reds' fire sale continued on Tuesday with Tyler Mahle being the latest player moved by the front office.

Cincinnati sent Mahle to the Minnesota Twins, receiving infielder Spencer Steer, third baseman Christian Encarnacion-Strand and southpaw Steven Hajjar in return.

Cincinnati Reds @Reds

The <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Reds?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Reds</a> have acquired IF Spencer Steer (Twins No. 7 prospect according to MLB Pipeline), IF Christian Encarnacion-Strand (No. 23) and LHP Steven Hajjar (No. 18) from Minnesota in exchange for RHP Tyler Mahle.

Jon Heyman of the New York Post and C. Trent Rosecrans of The Athletic first reported details of the deal.

Mahle becomes the latest player to be traded by the Reds. All-Star pitcher Luis Castillo, outfielder Tommy Pham and outfielder Tyler Naquin have also been dealt in the past week.

Even before the deadline moves, Reds general manager Nick Krall indicated the team would be cutting payroll before the start of the 2022 season after trading Tucker Barnhart to the Detroit Tigers.

"Having been drafted and developed by the Reds, our entire organization has a connection to [Barnhart] and our fans love him," Krall told reporters in November. "But going into 2022, we must align our payroll to our resources and continue focusing on scouting and developing young talent from within our system."

In the days after the lockout ended on March 10, Krall got back to work doing just that. Sonny Gray and minor-league pitcher Francis Peguero were traded to the Twins for 2021 first-round draft pick Chase Petty on March 13.

One day later, the Reds sent Jesse Winker and Eugenio Suarez to the Seattle Mariners for Justin Dunn, Jake Fraley and Brandon Williamson.

Ken Rosenthal @Ken_Rosenthal

Reds offseason:<br><br>Lose Wade Miley on waivers, save $10M<br><br>Trade Sonny Gray to Twins for two prospects, save $10M<br><br>Trade Jesse Winker and Eugenio SuΓ‘rez to Mariners for four young players, save about $40M <a href="https://t.co/DJrfZ3zD51">https://t.co/DJrfZ3zD51</a>

With the Reds seemingly going into teardown mode, Mahle had a tenuous future with the organization. He has two years of team control remaining before being eligible for free agency after the 2023 season.

Mahle has developed into a solid mid-rotation starter over the past two seasons. The right-hander was a seventh-round draft pick by Cincinnati in 2013. He made his MLB debut late in the 2017 season and joined the Reds' rotation full-time the following year.

After posting a 5.06 ERA in 48 starts between 2018-19, Mahle came into his own starting with the 2020 campaign. The California native had a career-low 3.59 ERA with 60 strikeouts in 47.2 innings during the COVID-19 pandemic-shortened season.

The 2021 season saw Mahle pick up right where he left off. He set career-highs in starts (33), innings (180) and strikeouts (210). His 3.8 FanGraphs wins above replacement ranked 13th among all qualified National League starters.

This season has been a step back for the right-hander, who has a 4.40 ERA and 1.246 WHIP in 19 starts. In two starts since coming off the injured list after the All-Star break, Mahle has a 2-0 record while allowing only five earned runs in 12 innings.

For his career, Mahle has a 5.02 ERA in hitter-friendly Great American Ball Park and a 3.74 ERA away from Cincinnati.

Given his age and career trajectory, Mahle has the potential to be an excellent addition to the Twins' rotation for at least the next two years.

Mahle should immediately provide a boost to Minnesota's rotation for a potential playoff push. The Twins (54-48) currently sit one game ahead of the Cleveland Guardians for first place in the American League Central.


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