News: Cardinals trade Stephen Piscotty to Athletics

What happened. The St. Louis Cardinals have agreed to send OF Stephen Piscotty to the Oakland Athletics in exchange for prospects utilityman Yairo Munoz and 2B Max Schrock.

The story. There were some hiccups to this deal as it was reported late last night that the deal was done and then nearly an hour later that there had been a snag and was still being worked out. Following the acquisition of Marcell Ozuna, which is expected to become official today, the club needed to make room and that meant moving Piscotty.

The numbers. Piscotty, 26, hit .234/.342/.367 with 9 home runs over 107 games with the Cardinals this season in the worst season of his career. Over two and a half seasons in the big leagues with the Cardinals, he hit .268/.346/.438 with 38 home runs and 66 doubles.

Munoz, 23, was an international free agent when he signed with the Athletics in 2012. This past season he hit .300/.330/.464 with 13 home runs between Double-A Midland and Triple-A Nashville. He is viewed as a plus defensive player who is capable of playing every position on the field and split his time in 2017 between shortstop, third base, and ceer field. He was Oakland’s #13 prospect according to MLB.com.

Schrock, 23, was a 13th round pick of the Washington Nationals in the 2015 MLB Draft. They acquired him in August 2016 in exchange for former Cardinal LHP Marc Rzepczynski. Schrock hit .321/.379/.422 with 7 home runs in 106 games for Double-A Midland this season while playing second base. He was Oakland’s #17 prospect according to MLB.com.

The impact. 6/10. Piscotty still has a great deal left in the tank, in my opinion. He had moments where he showed the flashes of what gave us such home when he hit .273 and 22 home runs in 2016, but he had others where he just flat out struggled.

No player likes to make excuses, but it doesn’t matter who you are, what you do for a living or how much you make, it’s hard to focus when there’s things going on at home. Even more difficult when you’re half a country away. And this year has not been easy on Stephen or the Piscotty family personally or professionally.

Hopefully returning the Bay Area can help him get his feet back under him and back to the player the Cardinals expected they were getting when they signed him to a 6 year, $33 million extension before the 2017 season began.

In return the Cardinals picked up two minor league players who look to have had success at every level through the minors. Very reminiscent to me of a guy like Greg Garcia, who went mostly unheralded but worked his way up and has been a productive utility guy off the bench for the Cardinals.

As I read and did research on these guys, the thing that stuck out to me about each was that Munoz can pay every position on the field (he’s in the right place to get to work with Jose Oquendo now too) and that Schrock and flat out hit.

It was a bit of a non-baseball decision to move Piscotty to Oakland, but I do believe that the Cardinals got a fair return for him considering last season. This does not look to be a straight contract dump.