The Minnesota Twins strike another deal sending Ryan Pressly to the Houston Astros
By Nate Palmer
The Minnesota Twins struck their second deal of the day as they agreed to send reliever Ryan Pressly to the Houston Astros.
The Minnesota Twins decided to strike a trade twice in the same day. After trading Eduardo Escobar to the Arizona Diamondbacks for three prospects earlier in the day. The Twins front office also found a deal for relief pitcher Ryan Pressly on Friday with the Houston Astros.
Pressly came to the Twins as a Rule-5 draft selection from the Boston Red Sox in 2012. His velocity and spin rate have always made him stand out from among his relieving counterparts.
It was about this time last season when Pressly finally started to put everything together for an extended stretch. He looked every bit the part of a future shutdown bullpen arm and a potential closer.
Pressly carried that look into 2018, and outside of some rough patches has looked like one of the most dominant relief pitchers in baseball. This season he has appeared in 51 games and tossed 41.2 innings while holding on to a 3.40 ERA. What has been even more exciting are his strikeout rate of 13.0 per nine innings and a swing strike rate of 17.9%.
In return the Twins will receive two players from a respectable Houston Astros farm system. The Twins acquired No. 10 prospect Jorge Acala and No. 15 prospect Gilberto Celestino as ranked by MLB Pipeline.
The top thing to know about Acala is that the right-handed starter can bring the heat. His fastball sits regularly in the upper 90’s and can even reach triple digits. While Acala needs to work on his secondary pitchers, imagine if he and Brusdar Graterol end up in the same rotation ever during their careers.
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Celestino is another speedy outfielder that the Twins will add to their farm system. While competing at the low Single-A level he is slashing .317/.383/.476 with a .859 OPS.
This is a nice package for a player I personally hoped would stay in the Twins bullpen. Pressly has always looked like the type of pitcher that helps fill out a championship level relief pitching corp. Exactly why the Houston Astros wanted to acquire him.
At the same time, bullpen arms are usually the most volatile and most easy to obtain commodities in baseball. That makes flipping a reliever for two prospects a great accomplishment and the right move from the Twins front office.
While the trades are flowing in rapidly it will be interesting to see if the Twins are able to sell off any of their other players receiving trade interest. For now we say farewell to Ryan Pressly and wish him the best in Houston.