ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Rays are close to trading former Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell to the San Diego Padres, according to an ESPN report.
The Rays would receive catcher Francisco Mejia, pitching prospects Luis Patiño and Cole Wilcox, and catching prospect Blake Hunt.
The trade would allow the Rays to shed themselves of Snell's contract which will pay him $39 million over the next three years. The 28-year-old started 17 games for the Rays during the 2020 pandemic-shortened regular season and postseason, winning six games and losing four.
Patiño is the key part of the trade from the Rays perspective. The 21-year-old right-hander has a 97 mph fastball and a slider many people consider among the best in the minors.
The switch-hitting Mejia struggled in a limited role in 2020 but hit .265 with 8 home runs in 79 games with the Padres in 2019.
Wilcox was taken out of the University of Georgia by the Padres in the third round of the 2020 MLB Draft. His fastball can reach 100 mph.
The 20-year-old Hunt played in the instructional league this year where he impressed scouts who believe he could quickly become a top prospect.
The trade is pending until a medical review can be completed.