Two months ago, Blake Snell got yanked off the mound with a two-hit shutout going in the final game of the World Series.
Now, the Tampa Bay Rays are ready to ship him out of town.
The San Diego Padres are close to completing a blockbuster trade to acquire Snell from the defending AL champions. The teams have an agreement in place and the star pitcher was told he’ll be sent to the Padres — subject to the review of medical records, according to a person familiar with the deal. The person spoke to The Associated Press late Sunday night on condition of anonymity because no announcement had been made.
According to The Athletic and ESPN, the Rays would receive 21-year-old pitcher Luis Patiño, catcher Francisco Mejía, pitching prospect Cole Wilcox and catching prospect Blake Hunt in return. The Athletic was first to report the players headed from San Diego to Tampa Bay if the trade is finalized.
Snell, the 2018 AL Cy Young Award winner, was 4-2 with a 3.24 ERA in 11 starts during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. He had 63 strikeouts in 50 innings.
Snell went 2-2 in the American League playoffs, then racked up 18 strikeouts in 10 innings and compiled a 2.70 ERA during the World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was pulled from Game 6 by Rays manager Kevin Cash in favor of reliever Nick Anderson after throwing only 73 pitches in 5 1/3 dominant innings — a heavily criticized move that backfired when the Dodgers came back to clinch the title with a 3-1 victory.
“There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t reflect on it,” Cash said last month after winning the AL Manager of the Year award.
“That decision was not reflective of my confidence in Blake. It was very reflective of my confidence in Nick, and that’s (what) I felt was, at the moment, the best chance for us to win the game.”