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Texas Rangers Pull Off The Swoop On The Cleveland Indians, Will Acquire Jonathan Lucroy

Milwaukee Brewers v Pittsburgh Pirates

The Texas Rangers AKA Mr. Steal Your Deadline Deal have pulled off the swoop again. They’ve done this before with Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels. This time, it’s Jonathan Lucroy, who’s coming to Texas, not Cleveland.

Lucroy was originally heading to the Indians over the weekend before the 30-year-old catcher exercised his no-trade clause to nix the trade. As explained over the weekend, Lucroy was under the impression that his playing time would be impacted in 2017 by Yan Gomes if and when the Indians picked up his option for next season.

Up until the acquisition of Lucroy, the Rangers were operating with Robinson Chirinos and Bobby Wilson as a catching tandem. Texas catchers were hitting a combined .233 with a .710 OPS. At first glance, you’d probably think those numbers suck, but the league average for the catching position this season is .241 with a .695 OPS. The Rangers were getting right around league average production at catcher, but now they’ve added Lucroy, who is third in the majors among catchers with at least 250 plate appearances in batting average (.299), and second in OPS (.841).

Texas was able to avoid including Joey Gallo, their top prospect, in the deal for Lucroy, who was rumored to have been a part of the trade right up until news broke that it was going down. The Rangers, instead, send prospects Lewis Brinson and Luis Ortiz to the Brewers, Texas’ No. 2 and 3 prospects, respectively. That’s a steep price to pay, but Lucroy’s limited no-trade clause did not include the Rangers, so not only did he have no say in being dealt to Texas, but he’ll also have no say in whether or not the Rangers pick up his option for the 2017 season, which they undoubtedly will to justify the haul that’s headed to Milwaukee. Lucroy now joins a lineup that also added Carlos Beltran earlier today.