Rays complete eleven-player trade with Padres, Nationals

Myers, Hanigan traded to San Diego in team's largest trade ever

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.-The Tampa Bay Rays have completed a three-team, 11-player trade with the San Diego Padres and Washington Nationals. The Rays have acquired five players: catcher Rene Rivera, right-handed pitcher Burch Smith and minor league first baseman Jake Bauers from San Diego, as well as outfielder Steven Souza Jr. and minor league left-handed pitcher Travis Ott from Washington. The Rays sent to San Diego outfielder Wil Myers, catcher Ryan Hanigan, minor league left-handed pitcher Jose Castillo and minor league right-handed pitcher Gerardo Reyes. In addition, Washington acquired minor league right-handed pitcher Joe Ross and a player to be named from San Diego. To make room for Rivera, Smith and Souza on the 40-man roster, the Rays have designated right-handed pitcher Brandon Gomes for assignment.

"This is a baseball trade, and one we believe will make our club more competitive both for 2015 and beyond," said President, Baseball Operations Matt Silverman. "Trading Wil Myers was not an easy decision, but we are very excited about the talent coming back our way, and this deal has potential to improve our team on both sides of the ball."

Rivera, 31, made a career-high 85 starts at catcher for the Padres in 2014 and set career marks in virtually every offensive category, including games (103), hits (74), doubles (18), home runs (11), RBI (44), batting average (.252), on-base percentage (.319) and slugging percentage (.432). He threw out 29 potential base stealers, most among major league catchers, while his 33.3 percent mark ranked fourth among major league catchers. His 3.10 catcher ERA ranked second in the majors, percentage points behind Washington's Wilson Ramos. Over parts of six major league seasons with the Seattle Mariners (2004-06), Minnesota Twins (2011) and Padres (2013-14), Rivera has thrown out 33.6 percent of attempted base stealers while the major league average over that span is 24.1 percent.

Smith, 24, is 15-11 with a 3.71 ERA (228.1-IP, 94-ER) in 48 appearances (46 starts) with 246 strikeouts and only 56 walks over parts of four minor league seasons. He spent the 2014 season with Triple-A El Paso, where he made two April starts before missing the remainder of the season with a forearm injury. Following the season, he appeared in nine games with the Surprise Saguaros in the Arizona Fall League. Smith made his major league debut against the Rays at Tropicana Field the season prior, and went on to make 10 appearances (seven starts) for the Padres in 2013. He entered the 2014 season ranked by Baseball America as the No. 8 prospect in the Padres organization.

Bauers, 19, spent his first full professional season with Class-A Fort Wayne, batting .296 (120-for-406) with eight home runs, 64 RBI and a .376 on-base percentage. The seventh-round selection of the 2013 June Draft made his professional debut with the Rookie-level AZL Padres in 2013. He was recently ranked the No. 14 prospect in the Padres organization by MLB.com.

Souza Jr., 25, spent the majority of the 2014 season with Triple-A Syracuse, batting .350 (121-for-346) with 25 doubles, 18 home runs, 75 RBI, 26 stolen bases and a .432 on-base percentage en route to International League Most Valuable Player honors. He led the IL in batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. The Nationals Minor League Player of the Year also made his major league debut in 2014, appearing in 21 games for Washington and hitting two home runs in 23 at bats. He made a game-ending, diving catch to save Jordan Zimmermann's no-hitter on September 28 vs. Miami-a catch that earned him Play of the Year honors in Major League Baseball's annual GIBBY Awards. Following the season, he was ranked the No. 5 prospect in the Nationals system by both Baseball America and MLB.com. Over eight career minor league seasons, he has batted .260 with 93 home runs, 421 RBI, 158 stolen bases and a .354 on-base percentage.

Ott, 19, split the 2014 season between Short-A Auburn and Class-A Hagerstown, going 1-4 with a 3.93 ERA (55-IP, 24-ER) over 13 starts. He made his professional debut following the 2013 June Draft and is 4-4 with a 3.96 ERA (84-IP, 37-ER) and 77 strikeouts over two minor league seasons.

Myers, 24, was limited to 87 games for the Rays in 2014 due to a right wrist fracture, batting .222 (72-for-325) with six home runs and 35 RBI. He was named the Jackie Robinson American League Rookie of the Year by the Baseball Writers' Association of America in 2013, batting .293 (98-for-335) with 13 home runs and 53 RBI in 88 games and leading the team in doubles (23), RBI, runs scored (50), on-base percentage (.354) and slugging percentage (.478) following his call-up. He led AL rookies in RBI, doubles, extra-base hits (36) and on-base percentage and tied for the AL rookie lead in total bases (160). He was acquired by the Rays from the Kansas City Royals in a seven-player trade in December 2012.

Hanigan, 34, hit .218 (49-for-225) with five home runs and 34 RBI in his first season with the Rays in 2014, appearing in 84 games with 66 starts at catcher. He was acquired by the Rays from the Cincinnati Reds as part of a three-team trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks in December 2013.

Castillo, 18, made three appearances for the GCL Rays in August. He is 2-2 with a 5.60 ERA (35.1-IP, 22-ER) over two career minor league seasons.

Reyes, 21, made his professional debut for Short-A Hudson Valley in 2014, going 2-1 with a 4.09 ERA (33-IP, 15-ER) and 39 strikeouts in 20 relief appearances.

Gomes, 30, split the 2014 season between the Rays and Triple-A Durham, recording a 3.71 ERA (34-IP, 14-ER) over 29 games at the major league level. In four career major league seasons, he is 9-6 with a 4.17 ERA (108-IP, 50-ER).

The 11-player trade marks the largest in franchise history. The previous most was an eight-player trade between the Rays and Chicago Cubs in January 2011, when the Rays traded right-handed pitcher Matt Garza, outfielder Fernando Perez and left-handed pitcher Zachary Rosscup to Chicago for right-handed pitcher Chris Archer, catcher Robinson Chirinos, outfielders Sam Fuld and Brandon Guyer and shortstop Hak-Ju Lee.