The Texas Rangers cemented their lead in AL West of the league with the addition of all-stars Jonathan Lucroy and Carlos Beltran. The Brewers also sent relief pitcher Jeremy Jeffress to the Rangers, which makes the trio-trade a clincher to make the team one of the top contenders to win the World Series this season.
The trade for the former Brewers catcher, Lucroy and Jeffress comes in a trade for two former first-round picks in outfielder Lewis Brinson and right-hander Luis Ortiz. Just before the Rangers-Brewers deal, Lucroy had vetoed his supposed trade with the Cleveland Indians which made him one of the hottest commodities, pre-deadline.
Lucroy, who has been having one of his best seasons, is hitting .299 with a 50 RBI and with 13 home runs in 95 games this season. His six-year career in the major league has all been spent with the Brewers, where he hit .284 in 805 games.
As the other player in the Brewers trade, right-handed pitcher, Jeffress, fires fastballs into the 90s and brings modest strikeout numbers (18.4 percent K rate this season) and a lot of groundballs (57.7 percent groundball rate).
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In the trade for Carlos Beltran, the New York Yankees dealt him to the Rangers in exchange for three minor league pitchers, which includes Dillon Tate-a fourth overall pick in the 2015 draft. The switch hitter, had been one of the Yankees’ top offensive weapons this season, leading the team with a .304 batting average, 22 home runs and 64 RBIs.
Beltran also comes at a very opportune time, with Texas recently losing Prince Fielder, the team’s primary designated hitter, to a season ending neck-surgery.
With these additions to the already formidable Rangers lineup, analysts say the team may actually have a shot at the World Series-a first for the franchise.
PHOTO COURTESY: Keith Allison/ Flickr