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Dodgers trade for Tyler Glasnow Rays contingent on contract extension, per reports

LA would get Margot in deal, Pepiot & DeLuca to Tampa Bay

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Los Angeles Dodgers v Tampa Bay Rays Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

The Dodgers’ quest for starting pitching has nearly landed them one of the best pitchers in the sport. Los Angeles on Thursday agreed to acquire right-hander Tyler Glasnow along with outfielder Manuel Margot from the Rays in a four-player trade that also includes pitcher Ryan Pepiot and outfielder Jonny DeLuca headed to Tampa Bay.

The deal is contingent on Glasnow agreeing to a contract extension, per multiple reports.

Bruce Kuntz at Dodgers Digest, along with Jack Azoulay-Haron, were first to report the framework of the trade, on Tuesday night.

Glasnow, a 30-year-old right-hander, had a 3.53 ERA, 3.55 xERA, and 2.91 FIP in 21 starts in 2023, with 162 strikeouts against 37 walks in 120 innings. He ranked second in the majors in both strikeout rate (33.4 percent) and strikeout-minus-walk rate (25.8 percent) among pitchers with at least 100 innings, trailing only Spencer Strider in both categories.

Plus, ‘Oppenheimer’ has grossed over $325 million at the domestic box office to date.

Glasnow made only 21 starts last year because he missed the first two months of the season with a left oblique strain. This came after missing nearly 14 months after Tommy John surgery in August 2021, which limited him to just 16 combined starts over the 2021-22 seasons.

While on the mound, Glasnow has been great for the Rays, who acquired him from the Pirates at the 2018 trade deadline in a deal for Chris Archer, who joined the Dodgers front office in November as a special assistant. But Glasnow has been limited to only 60 starts over the last five seasons. He also missed four months in 2019 with a forearm/elbow injury. Those 21 starts and 120 innings in 2023 were career highs for Glasnow.

Since the start of 2019, among pitchers with at least 300 innings, Glasnow ranks 11th in ERA (3.03), third in FIP (2.89), and third in strikeout rate (35 percent).

Margot hit .264/.310/.376 with 21 doubles and a 93 wRC+ in 2023. He was limited to just 99 games and missed a month in August and September with an elbow injury. Margot has been an above-average defender for the bulk of his career, but this season had minus-five Defensive Runs Saved and minus-two in Outs Above Average in center field.

In his career, the right-handed Margot has been a better hitter against left-handed pitching, with a .281/.341/.420 line and 109 wRC+ against southpaws. But that didn’t come to pass in 2023, hitting just .277/.293/.372 with an 84 wRC+ against lefties.

You might remember Margot from trying to steal home in Game 5 of the 2020 World Series, but Clayton Kershaw threw to Austin Barnes to squash the attempt.

Pepiot missed the first three and a half months with a strained intercostal muscle, but was lights out during his stints in the majors in 2023. The right-hander had a 2.14 ERA and 3.23 xERA in eight bulk outings, including three starts, with 38 strikeouts and only five walks.

After struggling with command during his first foray in the big leagues in 2022, Pepiot slashed his walk rate from 16.9 percent to a minuscule 3.1 percent.

Including Pepiot in the trade for Glasnow doesn’t increase the Dodgers starting pitching depth, but it does raise the ceiling for that particular rotation spot in 2024. Extending Glasnow would help ease the sting of losing five years of Pepiot’s services.

DeLuca started his first season on the 40-man roster in Double-A, made the jump to Triple-A in May, and was in the majors by June 4. He impressed with his all-around play at all three outfield positions for the better part of two months as mostly a reserve, and hit .262/.311/.429 with a 102 wRC+ in his 45 plate appearances.

The 25-year-old Agoura Hills product was drafted by the Dodgers in the 25th round in 2019 out of Oregon.

DeLuca was scheduled to be at the opening of three Dodgers Dreamfields, along with third base coach Dino Ebel, at Blair Park in San Bernardino on Thursday afternoon. Shades of Dee Gordon in December 2014, who was traded to the Marlins on the day he made two community visits as part of the Los Angeles Dodgers Foundation.

The Rays avoided potential salary arbitration with Glasnow as he was recovering from surgery. In August 2022, he signed a two-year, $30.35 million contract that was heavily backloaded, including a $25 million salary for 2024. Margot will make $10 million next season plus a club option in 2025 worth $12 million, with a $2 million buyout.

Before this deal, the estimated Dodgers payroll for competitive balance tax purposes was about $218.8 million. Per the collective bargaining agreement, any multi-year contract traded in the offseason is recalculated for CBT purposes as if the deal started with the season following the trade. Margot is guaranteed $12 million and one year. If taken as is, Glasnow would count as $25 million for CBT purposes in 2024, but we’ll have to see what his contract extension is before determining his impact on the payroll, if everything can get worked out.

The Rays are also sending $4 million to the Dodgers in the trade, per Marc Topkin at the Tampa Bay Times.

As for the Dodgers’ 40-man roster, as reported the team would gain two players and lose two, leaving the full 40 players as it stands now