The Orioles are trading first baseman and designated hitter Trey Mancini to the Astros, sources told The Athletic on Monday. The Tampa Bay Rays are acquiring Jose Siri from Houston as part of the deal, a three-team deal, the source said. The Rays are trading RHP Seth Johnson to the Orioles and RHP Jayden Murray to the Astros, and Baltimore is believed to be acquiring another player from Houston, according to a source.
Mancini will fill a power vacuum for the American League West-leading Astros, who have not had the production they expected from veteran Yuli Gurriel this season.
In 92 games this season, the righty-swinging Mancini has a .268/.347/.404 slash line with 10 homers. His 114 wRC+ ranks sixth among Astros regulars, just ahead of Gurriel’s wRC+ of 97.
The move made sense for Mancini, 30. Mancini is a pending free agent and the team has made no attempt to re-sign him due to his age. Also, the Orioles will get big money playing a young replacement in first baseman Ryan Mountcastle.
However, Mancini is more than just a first baseman and designated hitter who can play emergency corner outfield. He is a leader in the clubhouse and one of the most respected players in baseball because of how he handled stage 3 colon cancer surgery in 2020. It’s an absolute favorite in Baltimore.
Orioles general manager Mike Elias made a tough call here. Although the market seems somewhat limited due to his position, Mancini had to try to get something in return. Elias also had to contend with public backlash, knowing Orioles fans wouldn’t be happy if Mancini was traded just to be traded.
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