The Chicago Cubs have traded left-handed reliever Andrew Chafin to the Oakland Athletics, the Cubs announced after their win over the Reds Monday night. The Cubs are getting two minor leaguers in the deal, corner infielder/outfielder Greg Deichmann and right-handed pitcher Daniel Palencia.
Chafin, 31, has a 2.06 ERA, 0.84 WHIP and 37 strikeouts against 11 unintentional walks in 39 1/3 innings this season. He's served alongside righty Ryan Tepera as one of the two primary setup men for Craig Kimbrel. Chafin's numbers took a huge hit in his last outing when he allowed three runs on two hits along with two walks without recording an out. Before that, he had a 1.37 ERA and 0.74 WHIP. Prior to that meltdown, he had gone 26 straight outings without allowing a run.
The A's mostly use Lou Trivino as their closer with lefty Jake Diekman and righties Sergio Romo and Yusmeiro Petit in the setup roles. Chafin is sure to enter this mix in the late innings, especially if he throws the way he's thrown nearly all year for the Cubs, his last outing notwithstanding.
Chafin isn't necessarily a "rental," pitcher here, either. There's a mutual option for next season for just $5.25 million. At this level of production, he's absolutely worth that much. The question is, should he pitch well from here on out, whether he'd want to accept the option or test the open market now coming off what looks like his career year.
The A's enter Tuesday in the second AL wild card spot, one game up on the Mariners.
The Cubs have fallen out of contention and are clearly sellers. The biggest names are possibly yet to be dealt, with at least Craig Kimbrel sure to go and possibly even the likes of Kris Bryant and/or Anthony Rizzo.
Deichmann, 26, was the A's second-round pick out of LSU in 2017. He's hitting .300/.432/.449 with 13 doubles, three triples, four homers, 34 RBI, 47 runs and seven steals in 59 Triple-A games this season. This past offseason, here's what CBS prospects expert R.J. Anderson wrote on him:
Injuries have prevented Deichmann, Oakland's second-rounder in 2017, from playing in more than 100 games in a season. He did have a nice run in last year's Arizona Fall League, homering nine times in 23 games. There's a good amount of risk here -- he's awfully prone to striking out, in addition to his physical woes -- yet he could be a nifty platoon bat so long as he stays healthy.
Deichmann is having a quality season now and was considered a top-10 prospect in the A's system, so this is a nice get for the Cubs, considering they just re-signed Chafin on a cheap deal in February.
Palencia, 21, is 0-2 with a 6.91 ERA, 1.61 WHIP and 14 strikeouts in 14 1/3 innings in Class A this season.