The Seattle Mariners have acquired starting pitcher Drew Smyly from the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for the recently acquired outfielder Mallex Smith, as well as minor league shortstop Carlos Vargas and minor league pitcher Ryan Yarbrough. Smith was acquired in a deal with the Atlanta Braves earlier today and flipped in this deal.
Smyly, 27, is a former second-round pick in the 2010 MLB Draft by the Detroit Tigers who broke into the league in 2012. Smyly spent two and a half seasons with the Tigers before being dealt in the three team blockbuster that sent David Price to Detroit, which also included the Mariners. Smyly was solid early on in his Rays career, but struggled last season, going 7-12 with a 4.88 ERA in 30 starts. Smyly joins the recently acquired Yovani Gallardo as new members of the Mariners rotation.
Smith, 23, was a former fifth-round pick in the 2012 MLB Draft by the San Diego Padres, and broke into the majors with the Atlanta Braves who acquired him in a deal that included Justin Upton. Smith was dealt in a deal to the Mariners earlier in the day that included top prospect Luiz Gohara. Smith had an average debut season in the majors, hitting .238/.316/.365 with three home runs, seven doubles, four triples, 22 runs batted in and 16 stolen bases in 72 games. It is unclear where the Rays intend to use Smith, who could patrol left field or back up in center field.
Vargas, 17, was signed out of the Dominican Republic last season and made his debut in the Mariners system this year with the DSL Mariners. Vargas hit .242/.344/.391 with seven home runs and 35 runs batted in during 62 games with the DSL Mariners. Because of his age, Vargas may remain in the Dominican Summer League another season.
Yarbrough, 25, is a former fourth-round pick of the Seattle Mariners in the 2014 MLB Draft. Yarbrough spent last season in Double-A Jackson, and was dominant as a starter. Yarbrough went 12-4 with a 2.95 ERA in 25 starts. Thanks to his large frame and elite control (2.2 walks per nine innings last year), Yarbrough appears poised to reach the majors in due time.