MLB trade season is starting to pick up.
On Saturday night, the New York Yankees announced they’ve acquired American League home run leader Edwin Encarnacion in a trade with the Seattle Mariners.
The New York Yankees have announced that they have acquired 1B/DH Edwin Encarnación from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for RHP Juan Then and cash considerations.— New York Yankees (@Yankees) June 16, 2019
In return, the Mariners will receive right-handed pitching prospect Juan Then, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post.
ESPN’s Jeff Passan was the first to report a trade was in place.
The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal adds that the teams will essentially split the money still owed to the veteran slugger.
Encarnacion still owed more than $15M in salary and buyout. Source says #Yankees and #Mariners essentially splitting the money. SEA paid more to get better prospect - pitcher Juan Then, who should move into 15-20 range on SEA top prospects list. First with Then: @Joelsherman1.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) June 16, 2019
Encarnacion, 36, can still swing it. He’s coming off seven straight seasons of at least 30 homers and 98 RBIs, which makes him one of the most consistently productive hitters in the game.
Where he’ll fit on the Yankees is the big question. With Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton beginning rehab assignments this weekend, the Yankees lineup is expected to be at near full strength very soon.
Encarnacion is limited to first base and designated hitter, which means he could be used primarily against left-handed pitchers. It might also mean more days off for Judge and Stanton as well, which is probably a necessity at this point. The Yankees have been rolling with Luke Voit at first base and a hodgepodge group at DH while awaiting Stanton’s return.
The Yankees have been struggling of late, posting a 5-8 record in June after Saturday’s 8-4 win against the White Sox. They hold a one-half game lead over the Tampa Bay Rays in the AL East thanks largely to their 37-19 start.
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