Leonys Martin Traded to Indians from Tigers for Willi Castro

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJuly 31, 2018

Detroit Tigers' Leonys Martin plays against the Minnesota Twins in a baseball game Tuesday, May 22, 2018, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)
Jim Mone/Associated Press

The Cleveland Indians announced the acquisition of outfielder Leonys Martin and starting pitcher Kyle Dowdy from the Detroit Tigers ahead of Tuesday's MLB non-waiver trade deadline in exchange for shortstop prospect Willi Castro.

Detroit signed Martin as a free agent in December. He posted a .251/.321/.409 slash line with nine home runs and seven stolen bases across 78 appearances. He's been on the disabled list twice this season because of hamstring issues.

His name was already in the rumor mill when he returned from his most recent DL stint earlier this month, and he explained his mindset about a potential trade.

"I've been through this," Martin told reporters July 20. "It's something you've got to deal with. I don't have control. All I can do is show up and be ready to play. Only God knows what the plan is. I like Detroit. I'd like to be here. But it's not up to me. We'll see what happens."

He could receive an opportunity to take over as the Tribe's everyday center fielder. That said, it might end up being a platoon with Rajai Davis unless he goes on an offensive tear down the stretch.

Dowdy, 25, owns a 3.77 career ERA in 72 games across four levels of the minor leagues. He'll be organizational pitching depth for Cleveland.

Meanwhile, the struggling Tigers receive a prospect in Castro as they start looking toward the future in light of their 45-62 record.

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The 21-year-old Puerto Rico native has compiled a lackluster .653 OPS during his first season in Double-A. He finished 2017 with a .761 OPS, 19 steals and 11 homers across 123 games in the Carolina League (Single-A Advanced).

MLB.com ranked him as the Indians' eighth-best prospect before the trade.

Ultimately, the deal makes sense for both AL Central rivals.

The Indians needed outfield help, and Francisco Lindor is locked in as their starting shortstop for the foreseeable future, blocking Castro's eventual path to the big leagues. On the flip side, the Tigers have faded from the playoff race and got another talented player for their system.