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Who will Angels protect from Rule 5 Draft?

Newly improved farm system gives Halos difficult choices to make
MLB.com @mi_guardado

One of the tricky -- though welcomed -- consequences of their rebuilt farm system is that the Angels are now faced with a 40-man roster crunch that will force them to make difficult personnel decisions next week.

General manager Billy Eppler and his staff will have until Tuesday at 5 p.m. PT to add eligible Minor Leaguers to the club's 40-man roster to shield them from the Rule 5 Draft. Those left unprotected could be selected by another team during the Rule 5 Draft, which will take place on Dec. 13 at the Winter Meetings in Las Vegas.

One of the tricky -- though welcomed -- consequences of their rebuilt farm system is that the Angels are now faced with a 40-man roster crunch that will force them to make difficult personnel decisions next week.

General manager Billy Eppler and his staff will have until Tuesday at 5 p.m. PT to add eligible Minor Leaguers to the club's 40-man roster to shield them from the Rule 5 Draft. Those left unprotected could be selected by another team during the Rule 5 Draft, which will take place on Dec. 13 at the Winter Meetings in Las Vegas.

Eligible players are those who signed or were drafted when they were 18 or younger and have logged five Minor League seasons, or those who signed or were drafted when they were 19 or older and have completed four Minor League seasons.

The Angels currently have 39 players on their 40-man roster, so they'll have to clear a handful of spots in the coming days if they want to protect more than one Draft-eligible prospect.

"It's going to be difficult this season," Eppler said at the GM Meetings earlier this month. "I'd rather be in that position than not. But we've already had an initial conversation internally about it to kind of help us prepare with some of the roster moves that you've seen us making now. We'll see how that unfolds."

Here are 10 notable players who will be eligible for the Rule 5 Draft if the Angels do not move to protect them by Tuesday:

LHP Jose Suarez (No. 8 prospect, per MLB Pipeline)
Suarez appears to be a lock to be added to the 40-man roster, as he's developed into one of the organization's top pitching prospects after making his way from Class A Advanced Inland Empire to Triple-A Salt Lake in 2018. The 20-year-old Venezuelan posted a 3.92 ERA over 117 innings across three Minor League levels and missed a ton of bats, averaging 10.9 strikeouts per nine innings. He will enter the 2019 season on the Angels' rotation depth chart and should reach the Majors sooner rather than later.

INF Luis Rengifo (No. 10)
Acquired from the Rays in exchange for C.J. Cron in February, Rengifo, 21, should also be an easy add. The switch-hitting middle infielder batted .299 with an .851 OPS and 41 stolen bases in 127 games across three levels in 2018, finishing the year at Triple-A Salt Lake. He is expected to compete with David Fletcher and Taylor Ward for a starting infield job during Spring Training.

INF Leonardo Rivas (No. 15)
Known for his on-base skills, speed and solid defense in the middle infield, the 21-year-old Rivas experienced a dip in his offensive production in 2018, batting .234 with a .687 OPS and 16 stolen bases in 121 games between the Rookie-level Angels and Class A Burlington. The fact that he hasn't played above A-ball could make it difficult for the Angels to award him a spot on their 40-man roster this fall.

RHP Luis Pena (No. 18)
Pena, 23, logged a 4.85 ERA over 105 2/3 innings in 23 starts between Double-A Mobile and Triple-A Salt Lake this past season. He mixes a low-90s fastball with a nasty slider, though his changeup and command have been inconsistent in the past.

RHP Joe Gatto (No. 28)
A second-round Draft pick of the Angels in 2014, Gatto recorded a 5.18 ERA over 120 innings in 25 starts between Class A Advanced Inland Empire and Double-A Mobile in 2018. He's had trouble developing a third pitch to complement his sinker-curveball combination, but the 23-year-old still has some time to continue to improve.

OF/1B Jared Walsh
Walsh isn't ranked among the Angels' Top 30 prospects, but he's likely to be added to the 40-man roster after batting .277 with an .895 OPS and 29 home runs in 128 games across three levels in 2018. A 25-year-old left-handed hitter, Walsh can play the corner outfield, first base and was also sent to the instructional league this fall to take part in a formal pitching program. Eppler has already included Walsh among the group of young position players that he believes will be ready to contribute to the Angels in 2019.

CF Bo Way
A seventh-round Draft pick out of Kennesaw State in 2014, Way hit .312 with a .759 OPS in 2018, though he was limited to only 68 games between Double-A Mobile and Triple-A Salt Lake. Way has also been deployed as a left-handed pitcher in the Minors and posted a 2.84 ERA over 6 1/3 innings in six relief appearances this past season. He joined Walsh in the instructional league to further his development as a pitcher this fall.

INF Roberto Baldoquin
The Angels spent nearly $15 million to sign Baldoquin out of Cuba in 2014 and have since watched the 24-year-old infielder make a slow climb up their organizational ranks. He showed signs of improvement in 2018, batting a career-high .278 with a .713 OPS in 82 games between Class A Advanced Inland Empire and Double-A Mobile. But that success did not extend to Baldoquin's stint in the Arizona Fall League, where he hit just .188 with 17 strikeouts and five walks in 11 games with the Mesa Solar Sox.

LHP Conor Lillis-White
Lillis-White has enjoyed a steady rise through the Angels' farm system since being selected in the 32nd round of the 2015 Draft out of the University of British Columbia. The 26-year-old reliever logged a 3.50 ERA over 72 innings in 46 appearances between Double-A Mobile and Triple-A Salt Lake in 2018. His ability to pitch multiple innings out of the bullpen could also help bolster his case for a spot on the club's 40-man roster.

RHP Jeremy Rhoades
Rhoades, a fourth-round Draft pick by the Angels out of Illinois State in 2014, is another intriguing relief option who is coming off a breakout season in the Minors. Rhoades recorded a 2.54 ERA over 78 innings in 54 appearances between Double-A Mobile and Triple-A Salt Lake this past season. The 25-year-old was named a Pacific Coast League All-Star in July and allowed only one earned run in 22 games in the second half.

Maria Guardado covers the Angels for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter.

Los Angeles Angels

Source: Angels, Bourjos reunite on Minors deal

MLB.com

The Angels are bringing back outfielder Peter Bourjos on a Minor League deal, MLB.com's Maria Guardado confirmed. The deal was first reported by the Orange County Register. Boujos will be in the mix to fill a bench role as the club's fourth outfielder next season.

The 31-year-old veteran, who was selected by the Angels in the 10th round of the 2005 Draft, last played for the club in 2013. He debuted in 2010 and hit .251 with 24 homers, 89 RBIs and 41 stolen bases in 354 games across four seasons with Los Angeles.

The Angels are bringing back outfielder Peter Bourjos on a Minor League deal, MLB.com's Maria Guardado confirmed. The deal was first reported by the Orange County Register. Boujos will be in the mix to fill a bench role as the club's fourth outfielder next season.

The 31-year-old veteran, who was selected by the Angels in the 10th round of the 2005 Draft, last played for the club in 2013. He debuted in 2010 and hit .251 with 24 homers, 89 RBIs and 41 stolen bases in 354 games across four seasons with Los Angeles.

The Angels dealt Bourjos and Randal Grichuk to the Cardinals after the 2013 season in exchange for David Freese and Fernando Salas, and Bourjos has since passed through six organizations -- the Phillies, White Sox, Rays, Cubs, Braves and Giants.

In limited action with the Braves last season, Bourjos hit .205/.239/.364 in 36 games. He was designated for assignment by Atlanta in June and signed a Minor League deal with San Francisco in July, but finished the season with Triple-A Sacramento.

Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles.

Los Angeles Angels, Peter Bourjos

30 ROY candidates for 2019 -- 1 for each team

MLB.com

On Monday, Shohei Ohtani and Ronald Acuna Jr. were named Rookie of the Year in the American and National Leagues, respectively. But they were far from the only first-year players to make an impact in the big leagues in 2018.

It would be difficult to find a team in the history of the modern game who went through an entire season without needing to use its farm system. Sometimes, jobs are given to rookies on Opening Day, as was the case with Ohtani and the Angels. Other times, a player has to wait to be called up to make an impact, just like Acuna did with the Braves.

On Monday, Shohei Ohtani and Ronald Acuna Jr. were named Rookie of the Year in the American and National Leagues, respectively. But they were far from the only first-year players to make an impact in the big leagues in 2018.

It would be difficult to find a team in the history of the modern game who went through an entire season without needing to use its farm system. Sometimes, jobs are given to rookies on Opening Day, as was the case with Ohtani and the Angels. Other times, a player has to wait to be called up to make an impact, just like Acuna did with the Braves.

In 2018, both prospects entered the season as Rookie of the Year contenders, if not front-runners, in each league. But sometimes Rookies of the Year come on unexpectedly. With that in mind, here is a potential ROY candidate from each organization.

AL East

Blue Jays: Vladimir Guerrero Jr., 3B
There's a strong case to made that Guerrero, MLB Pipeline's No. 1 overall prospect, should have reached the Majors last season, even with the Blue Jays' struggles. But he didn't and ultimately finished with an absurd .381/.437/.636 line and 20 home runs while reaching Triple-A at age 19. His bat is 100 percent ready for the highest level, and once there, Guerrero is a candidate to run away with top rookie honors in the AL, regardless of when he arrives.

Video: EAST@WEST: Guerrero Jr. doubles, advances on error

Orioles: Yusniel Diaz, OF
The Orioles' key acquisition in the deadline deal that sent Manny Machado to Hollywood, Diaz is yet to tap into his above-average raw power but has a good idea of what he's doing at the plate, as evidenced by his .285/.392/.449 slash line and 11-homer last season in Double-A. Some other internal options may get first crack in either right or left field as the Orioles rebuild, but Diaz should become an everyday guy for them before long.

Rays: Brandon Lowe, 2B
Lowe struggled initially upon reaching the Majors, going 0-for-19 following his debut on Aug. 5. After that, however, he slashed .273/.357/.527 with six homers in 37 games to finish the year with a career-high 28 home runs between Double-A, Triple-A and MLB. He also finished with 129 at-bats, leaving him two ABs short of exhausting his rookie eligibility. Like so many young Rays players, Lowe has the defensive versatility that could make him a near regular for Tampa Bay in 2019.

Red Sox: Michael Chavis, 3B
The defending World Series champions have a depleted farm system and few opportunities at the big league level. One of the better power-hitting prospects in the upper Minors, Chavis could contribute if Rafael Devers struggles again or the need for a right-handed-hitting first baseman arises.

Yankees: Justus Sheffield, LHP
The Yankees' greatest need is starting pitching, and Sheffield should crack the Opening Day rotation. His fastball, slider and changeup all can be three plus pitches, so it won't be a shock if he's New York's second-best starter after Luis Severino.

Video: Mayo gives some 2019 AL Rookie of the Year contenders

AL Central

Indians: Yu Chang, SS
Though he continues to face an uphill battle towards carving out a spot in Cleveland's infield, Chang, a member of the Tribe's 40-man roster, saw increased reps at third base during the regular season and regular time there in the Arizona Fall League, suggesting the hot corner could be his path of least resistance. He has the hitting ability and raw power to profile there, as well as the defensive versatility to handle a utility role.

Royals: Nicky Lopez, SS/2B
Lopez is blocked at the moment by Whit Merrifield and Adalberto Mondesi, but he's also sound in all phases of the game and has nothing left to prove in Triple-A. He should open the season in nothing less than a utility role and should claim at least semi-regular at-bats.

Tigers: Christin Stewart, OF
He's hit at least 25 homers in each of his three full seasons of pro ball and hit a pair of homers in 60 big league at-bats this past September. Stewart has improved his overall approach, drawing a lot more walks, while still hitting balls out of the park, something that should continue with a full-time gig in Detroit next season.

Twins: Stephen Gonsalves, RHP
The left-hander didn't fare well during his first taste of the big leagues in 2018, but he had a fantastic year, mostly in Triple-A, finishing second in the system in ERA and fifth in strikeouts, while keeping hitters to a combined .184 BAA. Gonsalves' upside might be limited, but he's ready to be a mid-rotation starter.

White Sox: Eloy Jimenez, OF
If anyone can challenge Blue Jays third baseman Vladimir Guerrero for the title of best offensive prospect in baseball, it's Jimenez. Ready last summer but kept in the Minors for service-time considerations, he'll be the foundation the White Sox build their lineup around.

Watch: Jimenez crushes 12th homer for Charlotte

AL West

Athletics: Jesus Luzardo, LHP
Luzardo nearly reached the Majors in 2018 in what was his first full pro campaign as well as his first fully healthy, unimpeded season since his Tommy John surgery in mid-2016. Altogether, the left-hander (in his age-20 season) compiled a 2.88 ERA and 1.09 WHIP with 129 strikeouts and 30 walks in 109 1/3 innings while ascending from Class A Advanced to Triple-A. The A's will be without many of the starting pitchers that were lost due to injuries last season, so expect Luzardo to receive an earnest look during spring training.

Angels: Griffin Canning, RHP
The UCLA product projected as an advanced college arm and lived up to that advanced billing, racing all the way to Triple-A in his first full season. His four-pitch mix with excellent command allowed him to miss bats all the way up the ladder and is why he is just about ready to hit the Angels' rotation.

Astros: Kyle Tucker, OF
The No. 5 overall pick in the 2015 Draft, Tucker has recorded back-to-back 20-20 seasons in the upper Minors. His Triple-A line (.332/.400/.590) is much more representative of his upside than the numbers from his big league debut (.141/.236/.203).

Watch: Tucker crushes game-tying homer

Mariners: Wyatt Mills, RHP
Viewed by scouts as a potential fast-riser when the Mariners took him in the third round of the 2017 Draft, Mills, 23, was just that in his first full season as he reached Double-A and followed it with an impressive turn in the Arizona Fall League. With right-handed delivery and profile that resembles Steve Cisheck's as well as comparable stuff, Mills has all the ingredients needed to become an impactful bullpen piece in 2019.

Rangers: Yohander Mendez, LHP
Mendez's prospect luster has dimmed a bit over the last two years, yet that won't prevent him from fitting in the middle of the Rangers' rotation. He still has a quality changeup but needs to refine his command and breaking ball.

NL East

Braves: Touki Tousssaint, RHP
The Braves have scores of young pitchers who could contend for Rookie of the Year honors next season. Toussaint gets the nod because of the pure stuff that helped him lead the system in ERA and strikeouts and because of how well his big league debut went, earning him a spot on the postseason roster.

Video: Mayo on potential 2019 NL Rookie of Year candidates

Marlins: Victor Mesa, OF
While there currently are quite a few unknowns with Mesa, whom Miami signed for $5.5 million on Oct. 22, the consensus is that the 22-year-old outfielder shouldn't require all too much seasoning in the Minor Leagues after his success in Cuba's Serie Nacional. His plus defense in center field gives him a high floor in the big leagues, and any offensive contributions that surpass expectations could make him a ROY candidate.

Phillies: Ranger Suarez, LHP
Suarez made four uneven appearances with Philadelphia in 2018, reaching the big leagues before he turned 23, and he's the kind of smart left-hander who will learn and make adjustments. He's moved very quickly since starting the 2017 season in A ball and should fit nicely into the back end of the young Phillies rotation.

Nationals: Victor Robles, OF
Robles has taken second chair to teenage superstar Juan Soto in the Nationals' long-term outfield outlook with good reason. Yet, the future remains incredibly bright for the now 21-year-old center fielder, who hit .288/.348/.525 with three homers and three steals over 21 games with the Nats after a right elbow injury cost him much of the Minor League season. That Robles is the club's projected Opening Day center fielder at the moment makes him a preseason ROY favorite in the NL.

Watch: Robles triples on four-hit night

Mets: Peter Alonso, 1B
New Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen has said he isn't opposed to having Alonso start the year in New York, and for good reason. All the first baseman did in 2018 is tie for the Minor League lead in homers, while leading it outright in RBIs. More power was on display in the AFL, and he has nothing left to prove in the Minors.

NL Central

Brewers: Keston Hiura, 2B
The best hitter from the 2017 Draft class raked his way up to Double-A in his first full season, ultimately hitting .293/.357/.464 with 52 extra-base hits including 13 homers, and has been equally impressive in the Arizona Fall League, seemingly leaving him on the cusp of entering the Majors in'19. His knack for squaring up the baseball with authority to all fields is a truly special trait -- one that could make him a key Brewers run producer for a long time.

Cardinals: Dakota Hudson, RHP
Aside from some command issues (18 BB in 27 1/3 IP), Hudson was effective in relief for the big league club in 2018. It's a crowded rotation in St. Louis, so a relief gig might be his best full-time entry for the time being where his extreme ground-ball rate (2.03 GO/AO in his Minor League career) would play well.

Cubs: Duane Underwood, RHP
Underwood still needs some polish but was more aggressive and consistent in 2018 than he had been in years past. With a 92-97 mph fastball and a curveball that shows flashes of becoming a plus pitch, he could contribute in the bullpen and possibly the rotation.

Pirates: Mitch Keller, RHP
The Pirates often are cautious with their young pitching prospects, but look for Keller to push them hard in 2019. After struggling upon first reaching Triple-A at age 22, the right-hander then had a 2.86 ERA in August. Room will have to be made in Pittsburgh's rotation, but Keller will be ready to jump through it once the door is opened.

Watch: Keller records 10th K

Reds: Nick Senzel, INF
A finger injury, not to mention a bout with vertigo, greatly shortened his 2018 season, and that likely kept the No. 2 pick in the 2016 Draft from getting called up this past season. He's played several positions and was working on the outfield at instructs this fall to make sure there's a spot for his advanced bat in the big league lineup in 2019.

NL West

D-backs: Taylor Widener, RHP
Widener has made a very successful transition from reliever to starter and has put his 2015 elbow surgery in his rear-view mirror with two successful, and healthy, seasons in 2017 and 2018. This last year was his first with the D-backs and he led the system in ERA and strikeouts, while holding Southern League hitters to a .197 batting average against.

Dodgers: Alex Verdugo, OF
One of the best pure hitters in the Minors, Verdugo also offers developing power, a strong arm and the ability to play anywhere in the outfield. The only thing holding him back from being a slam-dunk Rookie of the Year candidate is a clear opening in the crowded Dodgers lineup.

Giants: Chris Shaw, OF
The best power hitter in the Giants system, Shaw made his first big league home run a tape-measure shot: 468 feet off a Seunghwan Oh slider. As of now, he looks like the frontrunner to start in left field for San Francisco.

Padres: Luis Urias, 2B/SS
Urias reached the Majors late in August and showed that he can do a little bit of everything before a groin injury prematurely ended his season after just 12 games. Assuming he's on the Padres' Opening Day roster, the 21-year-old could have an early advantage in the ROY based his ability to hit near the top of an order and make everyday contributions on both sides of the ball.

Rockies: Brendan Rodgers, SS
With DJ LeMahieu set to depart as a free agent, the No. 3 overall pick in the 2015 Draft is ready to replace him at second base. He has more offensive potential than most middle infielders and the versatility to play anywhere in the infield that he's needed.

Watch: Rodger hammers a solo blast

Decision time: Which prospects make 40-man?

MLB.com @JonathanMayo

It's decision time for all 30 Major League organizations.

By Tuesday, all teams will have decided who deserves a spot on their 40-man rosters. Those Minor Leaguers who are eligible but not put on the roster will be exposed to be taken by the other 29 teams in the Rule 5 Draft, which will take place at the Winter Meetings in Las Vegas, on Thursday. Dec. 13.

It's decision time for all 30 Major League organizations.

By Tuesday, all teams will have decided who deserves a spot on their 40-man rosters. Those Minor Leaguers who are eligible but not put on the roster will be exposed to be taken by the other 29 teams in the Rule 5 Draft, which will take place at the Winter Meetings in Las Vegas, on Thursday. Dec. 13.

Players first signed at age 18 must be added to 40-man rosters within five seasons or they become eligible to be drafted by other organizations through the Rule 5 process. Players signed at 19 years or older have to be protected within four seasons. Clubs pay $100,000 to select a player in the Major League phase of the Rule 5 Draft. If that player doesn't stay on the 25-man roster for the full season, he must be offered back to his former team for $50,000.

For this year, that means an international or high school Draft pick signed in 2014 -- assuming he was 18 or younger as of June 5 of that year -- has to be protected. A college player taken in the 2015 Draft is in the same position.

There are just eight players on MLB Pipeline's Top 100 Prospects list who need to be protected or become exposed to the Rule 5 Draft.

16. Mitch Keller, RHP, PIT
25. Dylan Cease, RHP, CWS
33. Jesus Sanchez, OF, TB
35. Chris Paddack,RHP, SD
39. Keibert Ruiz, C, LAD
64. Adonis Medina, RHP, PHI
67. Franklin Perez, RHP, DET
69. Michael Chavis, 3B, BOS

Last year, there were eight Top 100 players who needed to be protected. In 2016, there were 12, and in '15, there were 11. And every one of those 31 players were added to 40-man rosters.

There are obviously many more Minor Leaguers under consideration. There are 149 prospects on organizational Top 30 lists hoping to get added to a 40-man roster. That's down from last year, when there were 153, 85 of whom (55.6%) were protected. In 2016, there were 144 total, and 58% of them (84) were protected. In 2015, 75 of 156 (48%) Top 30 prospects landed on rosters.

Here's a list of all 30 teams' Top 30 prospects who needed to be protected to avoid being exposed to the Rule 5 Draft, along with non-Top 30 prospects who were given coveted roster spots:

* Indicates that a player has been added to his team's 40-man roster.

Arizona Diamondbacks (5)
7. Marcus Wilson, OF
11. Taylor Clarke, RHP
20. Kevin Cron, 1B
22. Alex Young, LHP
23. Cody Reed, LHP

Atlanta Braves (6)
20. Huascar Ynoa, RHP
21. Patrick Weigel, RHP
22. Travis Demeritte, OF
27. Alex Jackson, C
28. Josh Graham, RHP
29. Jacob Webb, RHP

Baltimore Orioles (2)
6. Dillon Tate, RHP
29. Luis Gonzalez, LHP

Boston Red Sox (7)
1. Michael Chavis, SS
7. Darwinzon Hernandez, LHP
10. Josh Ockimey, 1B
15. Travis Lakins, RHP
21. Jhonathan Diaz, LHP
23. Roldani Baldwin, C
27. Roniel Raudes, RHP

Chicago Cubs (4)
8. Justin Steele, LHP
17. Trevor Clifton, RHP
25. Earling Moreno, RHP
28. Jason Vosler, SS

Chicago White Sox (4)
3. Dylan Cease, RHP
19. Kodi Medeiros, LHP
20. Jordan Stephens, RHP
26. Spencer Adams, RHP

Cincinnati Reds (2)
13. Jimmy Herget, RHP
22. Michael Beltre, OF

Cleveland Indians 4)
7. Bobby Bradley, 1B
8. Sam Hentges, LHP
20. Oscar Gonzales, OF
29. Tyler Krieger, SS

Colorado Rockies (7)
9. Sam Hilliard, OF
10. Ryan Castellani, RHP
17. Justin Lawrence, RHP
19. Breiling Eusebio, LHP
23. Roberto Ramos, 1B
25. Brian Mundell, 1B
27. Dom Nunez, C

Detroit Tigers (4)
3. Franklin Perez, RHP
19. Jose Azocar, OF
24. Tyler Alexander, LHP
29. Derek Hill, CF
More »

Houston Astros (5)
12. Rogelio Armenteros, RHP
15. Garrett Stubbs, C
17. Riley Ferrell, RHP
23. Jonathan Arauz, SS
24. Trent Thornton, RHP

Kansas City Royals (6)
11. Josh Staumont, RHP
20. Scott Blewett, RHP
23. Elvis Luciano, RHP
28. D.J. Burt, SS
29. Foster Griffin, LHP
30. Ofreidy Gomez, RHP

Los Angeles Angels (4)
10. Luis Rengifo, IF
15. Leonardo Rivas, SS
18. Luis Pena, RHP
28. Joe Gatto, RHP

Los Angeles Dodgers (7)
2. Keibert Ruiz, C
10. Yadier Alvarez, RHP
13. Edwin Rios, 1B
19. Drew Jackson, SS
21. Matt Beaty, 1B/3B
24. Cristian Santana, SS
29. Andrew Sopko, RHP

Miami Marlins (7)
2. Monte Harrison, CF
6. Jorge Guzman, RHP
9. Isan Diaz, SS
17. Jordan Yamamoto, RHP
18. Christopher Torres, SS
26. Brayan Hernandez, CF
30. McKenzie Mills, LHP

Milwaukee Brewers (5)
10. Jake Gatewood, 1B
13. Trey Supak, RHP
15. Troy Stokes Jr., CF
17. Cody Ponce, RHP
28. Carlos Herrera, RHP

Minnesota Twins (5)
4. Nick Gordon, SS
13. LaMonte Wade, OF
15. Luis Arraez, 2B
16. Lewin Diaz, RF
22. Tyler Jay, LHP

New York Mets (4)
19. Luis Carpio, SS
21. David Thompson, 3B
25. Ali Sanchez, C
27. Patrick Mazeika, C

New York Yankees (1)
21. Erik Swanson, RHP

Oakland A's (5)
9. James Kaprielian, RHP
12. Richie Martin, SS
15. Grant Holmes, RHP
27. James Naile, RHP
30. Skye Bolt, CF

Philadelphia Phillies (5)
3. Adonis Medina, RHP
12. Daniel Brito, SS
11. Arquimedes Gamboa, SS
16. Jose Gomez, SS
27. Tom Eshelman, RHP

Pittsburgh Pirates (6)
1. Mitch Keller, RHP
5. Cole Tucker, SS
13. Jason Martin, CF
19. Gage Hinsz, RHP
24. Brandon Waddell, LHP
28. Domingo Robles, LHP

San Diego Padres (5)
5. Chris Paddack, RHP
12. Anderson Espinoza, RHP
25. Austin Allen, C
28. Edward Olivares, OF
29. Pedro Avila, RHP
More »

San Francisco Giants (7)
8. Sandro Fabian, OF
11. Logan Webb, RHP
18. Juan De Paula, RHP
19. Melvin Adon, RHP
23. Jordan Johnson, RHP
28. C.J. Hinojosa, SS/2B
30. Sam Coonrod, RHP

Seattle Mariners (11)
*5. Braden Bishop, OF
14. Art Warren, RHP
18. Rob Whalen, RHP
20. Ian Miller, OF
23. Anthony Jimenez, OF
24. Luis Liberato, OF
26. Ronald Rosario, OF
27. Chuck Taylor, OF
28. Anthony Misiewicz, LHP
29. Darin Gillies, RHP
30. Joseph Rosa, 2B
More »

St. Louis Cardinals (6)
4. Ryan Helsley, RHP
11. Max Schrock, 2B
13. Genesis Cabrera, LHP
14. Junior Fernandez, RHP
20. Ramon Urias, INF
23. Wadye Ynfante, OF
More »

Tampa Bay Rays (3)
4. Jesus Sanchez
17. Joe McCarthy, OF/1B
29. Ian Gibaut, RHP

Texas Rangers (4)
6. Taylor Hearn, LHP
17. Pedro Gonzalez, OF
22. Scott Heineman, OF
30. Edgar Arredondo, RHP

Toronto Blue Jays (3)
11. Hector Perez, RHP
24. Forrest Wall, OF
27. Jordan Romano, RHP

Washington Nationals (5)
13. Telmito Agustin, OF
17. James Bourque, RHP
24. Tomas Alastre, RHP
25. Jose Marmolejos, 1B/OF
29. Drew Ward, 3B/1B

Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLB Pipeline. Follow him on Twitter @JonathanMayo and Facebook, and listen to him on the weekly Pipeline Podcast.

Trout finishes second in AL MVP voting

Center fielder falls short of winning award for third time in career
MLB.com @mi_guardado

Mike Trout enjoyed his best overall season to date in 2018, but it wasn't enough to earn him his third career American League Most Valuable Player Award.

As expected, Trout finished runner-up to Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts, who drew 28 of 30 first-place votes to beat the Angels' center fielder for the honor, according to the results released Thursday by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Trout, 27, drew one first-place vote from Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and was listed no lower than fifth on every ballot for a total of 265 points, significantly behind Betts' 410.

Mike Trout enjoyed his best overall season to date in 2018, but it wasn't enough to earn him his third career American League Most Valuable Player Award.

As expected, Trout finished runner-up to Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts, who drew 28 of 30 first-place votes to beat the Angels' center fielder for the honor, according to the results released Thursday by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Trout, 27, drew one first-place vote from Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and was listed no lower than fifth on every ballot for a total of 265 points, significantly behind Betts' 410.

:: AL Most Valuable Player voting totals ::

• All 2018 Awards winners

In addition to winning two AL MVP titles in 2014 and '16, Trout has now finished second in the balloting four times in his career, tying a record he shares with Stan Musial, Ted Williams and Angels teammate Albert Pujols. His worst finish came in 2017, when he placed fourth after missing nearly seven weeks with a thumb injury.

Still, the results don't detract from another excellent campaign from Trout, who hit .312 with an MLB-high 1.088 OPS, 39 home runs, 79 RBIs and 24 stolen bases in 140 games in 2018. Trout also set career highs in on-base percentage (.460), OPS+ (199) and walks (122) while compiling the second-highest WAR (9.8) in the Majors, according to FanGraphs, trailing only Betts (10.4).

Defensively, Trout showed significant gains across most advanced fielding metrics, posting a plus-8 Defensive Runs Saved this past season (after recording a minus-6 DRS in '17). His improved defense led to his first Gold Glove Award nomination since '15, though the Red Sox's Jackie Bradley Jr. ultimately came away with the prize for AL center fielders.

Shortstop Andrelton Simmons also appeared on five MVP ballots, drawing two ninth-place votes and three 10th-place votes to finish 16th overall. Simmons, 29, batted a career-high .292 with a .754 OPS and 11 home runs while playing Gold Glove defense for the Angels this past season.

Maria Guardado covers the Angels for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter.

Los Angeles Angels, Mike Trout

Two-way phenom Ohtani wins AL ROY Award

Japanese star arrives to MLB with Ruthian debut season
MLB.com @mi_guardado

Shohei Ohtani was named the American League Rookie of the Year by the Baseball Writers' Association of America on Monday following a remarkable season that saw him become the Majors' first two-way star in a century.

Ohtani earned 25 of 30 first-place votes from the BBWAA electorate, finishing ahead of the Yankees' Miguel Andujar and Gleyber Torres. He is the third Angel to win the award, joining Mike Trout (2012) and Tim Salmon (1993), and the fourth Japanese-born winner, after Hideo Nomo (1995), Kazuhiro Sasaki (2000) and Ichiro Suzuki (2001).

Shohei Ohtani was named the American League Rookie of the Year by the Baseball Writers' Association of America on Monday following a remarkable season that saw him become the Majors' first two-way star in a century.

Ohtani earned 25 of 30 first-place votes from the BBWAA electorate, finishing ahead of the Yankees' Miguel Andujar and Gleyber Torres. He is the third Angel to win the award, joining Mike Trout (2012) and Tim Salmon (1993), and the fourth Japanese-born winner, after Hideo Nomo (1995), Kazuhiro Sasaki (2000) and Ichiro Suzuki (2001).

Acuna wins ROY Award in NL

"I'm really honored," Ohtani said through interpreter Ippei Mizuhara during a conference call with reporters. "It's really unbelievable that I was able to win this award, and how I was able to win it at such a high level of competition in Major League Baseball. I'm really proud of this award."

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Trout, who is a finalist for the AL MVP Award (which will be revealed Thursday on MLB Network), congratulated the 24-year-old Ohtani in a statement released by the Angels.

"I want to pass along my congratulations to Shohei for this special honor," Trout said. "It's great to see all of his hard work and effort recognized with this very prestigious award. All of us enjoyed playing alongside and watching Shohei excel as a two-way player and make history along the way. I have no doubt the best is yet to come!"

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After spending his first five professional seasons starring for the Nippon-Ham Fighters, Ohtani chose to leave his native Japan last fall to pursue a Major League career. His prowess as both a right-handed pitcher and left-handed hitter made him one of the most coveted free agents in recent memory, sparking a whirlwind courtship from nearly all 30 MLB teams.

:: AL Rookie of the Year voting totals ::

Ohtani's decision to join Trout in Anaheim came as a surprise to many and set heightened expectations for the Angels entering the 2018 season. After an uneven Spring Training generated questions about whether Ohtani's talent would translate to the Majors, he quickly erased those doubts once the regular season began.

"Even though I wasn't putting up the results that maybe everyone was expecting, I still felt like I was evolving as a player, making strides," Ohtani said. "So I wasn't really worried about that part."

All-time Rookie of the Year winners

Ohtani ultimately justified the hype, joining Babe Ruth as the only players in MLB history with 10 pitching appearances and 20 home runs in a season.

Video: Ohtani wins the AL Rookie of the Year Award

Before a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow halted his two-way endeavor and led to Tommy John surgery last month, Ohtani emerged as a front-line starter for the Angels, using his triple-digit fastball, devastating splitter and nasty slider to fashion a 3.31 ERA with 63 strikeouts over 51 2/3 innings.

He was just as impactful at the plate, batting .285 with a .925 OPS, 22 home runs, 61 RBIs and 10 stolen bases in 367 plate appearances. Even after receiving the elbow surgery recommendation in September, Ohtani continued to hit over the final month of the season, batting .310 with a 1.003 OPS and seven home runs.

Video: Ohtani on his pitching and hitting preferences

For all his success, Ohtani said he still felt dissatisfied by the overall trajectory of his rookie campaign since his elbow trouble limited him to only 104 games with the Angels.

"Putting numbers aside, I was kind of disappointed I wasn't able to play a full season," Ohtani said. "I feel like elite players should be able to play the full year and help out the team. That's something that I need to work on. That's going to be one of my goals: stay healthy and help the team to win from Day 1."

Video: MLB Tonight: Ohtani wins 2018 AL Rookie of the Year

Ohtani is currently in the early stages of his rehab from Tommy John surgery, which is expected to keep him off the mound until the 2020 season but shouldn't prevent him from contributing with his bat next year.

"Everything is going well," Ohtani said. "We're right on schedule, maybe even a little ahead. I'm very satisfied with where I'm at right now."

Video: Ohtani discusses his recovery from Tommy John surgery

Former Yankees outfielder Hideki Matsui, who's currently coaching the MLB All-Stars at the Japan Series and was the runner-up in the 2003 AL Rookie of the Year voting after coming over from Japan, said Ohtani's results speak for themselves.

"He really deserves this award, and as one Japanese baseball fan, I was really happy that he won it. As a member of the Yankees, I can't really say that too loudly. But I wish him well in his years to come and I want to congratulate him on winning such a nice award." 

Maria Guardado covers the Angels for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter.

Los Angeles Angels, Shohei Ohtani

Clark throws inning of relief, records first AFL win

MLB.com

Here's a team-by-team breakdown of how all 30 teams' prospects fared in Arizona Fall League action on Thursday:

• Gameday: Mesa 11, Surprise 10 | Peoria 2, Scottsdale 1 | Glendale 4, Salt River 2

Here's a team-by-team breakdown of how all 30 teams' prospects fared in Arizona Fall League action on Thursday:

• Gameday: Mesa 11, Surprise 10 | Peoria 2, Scottsdale 1 | Glendale 4, Salt River 2

AL East

Blue Jays (Surprise)
Blue Jays No. 22 prospect Santiago Espinal was 1-for-4 with a two-run single. Shawn Morimando started and lasted three innings, allowing five runs (three earned) on seven hits with a strikeout and a walk.

Orioles (Glendale)
Martin Cervenka went 2-for-4 and scored a run, and Jay Flaa pitched one clean inning, only allowing a walk.

Rays (Peoria)
Rays No. 7 prospect Ronaldo Hernandez hit a walk-off single to give Peoria a 2-1, come-from-behind victory. Matt Krook pitched three shutout innings in relief, striking out five while scattering two hits. No. 9 prospect Lucius Fox was 0-for-3 with a walk.

Red Sox (Mesa)
Third baseman Bobby Dalbec, the Red Sox's No. 6 prospect, crushed a two-run homer, his third this fall season, going 1-for-5.

Yankees (Glendale)
Yankees No. 2 prospect Estevan Florial reached base three times, going 1-for-2 with two walks and a run scored. Steven Sensley provided the game-winning hit for Glendale with his two-run triple in the bottom of the eighth. 

AL Central

Indians (Glendale)
Connor Marabell collect an RBI triple in the top of the first inning, scored a run and finished 1-for-4. Indians No. 6 prospect Yu Chang went 1-for-4. On the mound, Rob Kamisky threw 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief before Dalbert Siri threw two-thirds of an inning to get the win.

Royals (Surprise)
Royals No. 2 prospect Khalil Lee went 1-for-5, and Nick Heath went 2-for-5, each scoring a pair of runs.

Tigers (Mesa)
Tigers No. 8 prospect Daz Cameron had multiple hits for the fourth time in his last five games, going 3-for-5, including a double and an RBI single. Jake Rogers (No. 12) hit a walk-off single to give Mesa the 11-10 victory. Daniel Pinero was 0-for-3 with a pair of walks and two runs, and No. 14 prospect Gregory Soto made the start, allowing two runs on two hits as he struck out six in four innings.

Twins (Salt River)
Griffin Jax started for the Rafters and gave up two runs over four innings. Hector Lujan pitched an 1 1/3 scoreless innings of relief, and Adam Bray threw one scoreless frame.

White Sox (Glendale)
White Sox No. 9 prospect Luis Alexander Basabe scored a run and finished 1-for-5 for the Desert Dogs. Zach Thompson secured the win with his scoreless ninth-inning relief.

AL West

A's (Mesa)
A's No. 30 prospect Skye Bolt had a perfect day at the plate, hitting two doubles and walking three times as he plated two runs and scored three. Sam Sheehan pitched a perfect seventh, and Calvin Coker was charged with five unearned runs in the eighth.

Angels (Mesa)
David Mackinnon hit a two-run double as part of a 2-for-5 day, and Brett Hanewich allowed an unearned run on two hits in his inning of relief. Ryan Clark earned his first win of the fall despite allowing two runs in the ninth.

Astros (Scottsdale)
Astros No. 2 prospect Forrest Whitley was stellar in his five-inning start, allowing only one hit while striking out nine. Drew Ferguson went 2-for-4 with a double, while Erasmo Pinales took his second loss of the fall after allowing two runs in 1 1/3 innings. More »

Mariners (Peoria)
David McKay earned his second win of the fall after striking out two in a scoreless ninth inning. Chris Mariscal was 1-for-3 with a walk, and Joe DeCarlo and No. 20 prospect Ian Miller were a combined 0-for-4.

Rangers (Surprise)
Charles Leblanc was 2-for-5 and hit a game-tying two-run single in the ninth, but Joe Barlow took the loss after allowing the walk-off single in the bottom of the frame. Joe Kuzia also didn't fare well, allowing five runs in two-thirds of an inning.

NL East

Braves (Peoria)
Braves No. 6 prospect Cristian Pache was 1-for-3 with a walk and his third stolen base, and also recorded an outfield assist when he doubled a runner off of first base in the first inning. No. 23 prospect Izzy Wilson was 0-for-1 after entering as a pinch-hitter. Braxton Davidson was 0-for-3 with a walk and scored a run.

Marlins (Salt River)
It was a quiet day for Miami prospects as Marlins No. 12 prospect Brian Miller went 1-for-4, and Chad Smith took the loss, allowing two runs on three hits in two-thirds of an inning.

Phillies (Scottsdale)
Austin Listi was 3-for-4 with an RBI double to extend his hitting streak to four games. Darick Hall was 0-for-3 with a walk, and Luke Williams was 0-for-4.

Nationals (Salt River)
Nationals No. 2 prospect Carter Kieboom went 0-for-3 with a walk. Ben Braymer worked a scoreless inning of relief, striking out one and allowing one hit. Daniel Johnson (No. 7) finished the day 0-for-4

Mets (Scottsdale)
Top Mets prospect Andrew Gimenez and No. 11 prospect Desmond Lindsay combined to go 0-for-6.

NL Central

Brewers (Peoria)
After entering the game as a defensive sub, Weston Wilson walked and tied the game with an RBI single as part of Peoria's game-winning rally in the ninth inning. That helped starter Bubba Derby, who allowed one run in five strong frames but was on track for the loss. Brewers No. 1 prospect Keston Hiura and No. 19 prospect Trent Grisham both went 0-for-3.

Cardinals (Surprise)
Cardinals No. 27 prospect Conner Greene helped steady the ship after the Surprise pitching staff coughed up 10 early runs, as he got four groundouts and a strikeout as part of two perfect innings out of the bullpen. Lane Thomas started Surprise's late rally with a two-run single in the eighth, while Andy Young doubled, walked and scored two runs. Jeremy Martinez was 1-for-4 with a run.

Cubs (Mesa)
Cubs No. 6 prospect Nico Hoerner led Mesa hitters with three RBIs, as he doubled twice and hit a two-run single to hit safely in his fourth consecutive game. DJ Wilson (No. 16) added a double and a run, and Trent Giambrone (No. 29) walked twice. Manuel Rondon pitched a perfect fifth inning. More »

Pirates (Surprise)
Pirates No. 16 prospect Will Craig mashed his sixth homer of the fall, a three-run shot, to cap a five-run rally in the eighth. Bryan Reynolds (No. 8) was 0-for-3 with a walk, and Cole Tucker (No. 5) didn't hit after entering as a pinch-runner in the ninth. Geoff Hartlieb walked two in 1 1/3 scoreless innings.

Reds (Scottsdale)
Mark Kolozsvary hit his second double of the fall and was 1-for-4, while No. 23 propsect Alfredo Rodriguez was 1-for-3.

NL West

D-backs (Salt River)
The D-backs' No. 3 prospect, Jazz Chisholm, reached base three times, tallying two hits and a walk, and scored a run from the leadoff spot in the Rafters' lineup. D-back's No. 5 prospect Daulton Varsho finished 0-for-2, then was substiutted out. Pavin Smith (No. 4) finished the day 0-for-3 with a walk, and Drew Ellis went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts

Giants (Scottsdale)
Chase Johnson tossed his eighth consecutive scoreless appearance, allowing one hit in two innings, while striking out four. Giants No. 28 prospect CJ Hinojosa was 0-for-3 with a walk.

Padres (Peoria)
Padres No. 23 prospect Hudson Potts was 0-for-2.

Dodgers (Glendale)
Dodgers No. 20 prospect Errol Robinson and Cody Thomas each had 1-for-4 performances. Jared Walker finished 1-for-3 with a walk.

Rockies (Salt River)
Josh Fuentes launched a two-run home run, his only hit of the day (1-for-4), to put the Rafters ahead 2-0 in the top of the first inning. Rockies No. 9 prospect Sam Hilliard went 0-for-4.

Trout wins sixth Silver Slugger Award

MLB.com @castrovince

The list of 2018 American League and National League Silver Slugger Award winners announced on Thursday night on MLB Network includes quite a few past recipients of the offense-based honor. Most notably, Mike Trout won for the sixth time, Jose Altuve for the fifth, and Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado for the fourth apiece.

But the list also includes the first two-time winner … within the same season. J.D. Martinez's selection as both a designated hitter and an outfielder makes him the first player in the 39-year history of the award, which is presented annually by Louisville Slugger, to win two Silver Sluggers in the same year.

The list of 2018 American League and National League Silver Slugger Award winners announced on Thursday night on MLB Network includes quite a few past recipients of the offense-based honor. Most notably, Mike Trout won for the sixth time, Jose Altuve for the fifth, and Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado for the fourth apiece.

But the list also includes the first two-time winner … within the same season. J.D. Martinez's selection as both a designated hitter and an outfielder makes him the first player in the 39-year history of the award, which is presented annually by Louisville Slugger, to win two Silver Sluggers in the same year.

• All-time Silver Slugger Award winners

MLB managers and coaches fill in their blank Silver Slugger ballots at the conclusion of the regular season and are not allowed to vote for players on their own team. It's not unusual for players to receive votes at multiple positions, though that usually works to the detriment of a player's chances of winning. Martinez's exceptional year, in which he spent 62 percent of his time at DH and the other 38 in the corner outfield for the World Series champion Red Sox, created an exception all its own.

Here is the full list of winners for 2018:

Video: Perez wins his second career Silver Slugger Award

CATCHER
AL winner: Salvador Perez, Royals (second Silver Slugger Award)

Perez, who also won a Silver Slugger in 2016, was the only AL catcher to notch enough plate appearances to qualify for the batting title, and he repeated the career highs he set in 2017 with 27 homers and 80 RBIs. The Indians' Yan Gomes led AL catchers in OPS (.762) but in 107 fewer at-bats than Perez (.713 OPS).

Video: J.T. Realmuto wins Silver Slugger at catcher

NL winner: J.T. Realmuto, Marlins (first)

A much-discussed trade candidate of late, Realmuto led all qualifying catchers with his career-best .825 OPS while hitting 21 homers, 30 doubles and three triples.

Video: Jose Abreu wins second career Silver Slugger Award

FIRST BASE
AL winner: Jose Abreu, White Sox (second)

In a down year for productivity for AL first basemen, Abreu recaptured the award he last won in his rookie season of 2014. He had a .265/.325/.473 slash with 22 homers, 36 doubles and 78 RBIs.

Video: Goldschmidt takes home fourth Silver Slugger Award

NL winner: Paul Goldschmidt, D-backs (fourth)

A four-time Silver Slugger, Goldschmidt took an un-Goldschmidt-like .198 batting average into play on May 23 but wound up with a very-Goldschmidt-like .290/.389/.533 slash with 33 homers, 35 doubles and five triples by season's end. His .922 OPS was 25 points higher than any other qualifying first baseman in the Majors.

Video: Jose Altuve wins 5th career Silver Slugger Award

SECOND BASE
AL winner: Jose Altuve, Astros (fifth)

Beset by injury, Altuve endured a significant step down from his 2017 MVP numbers but will take home hardware anyway. He led all full-time AL second basemen in batting average (.316) and OPS (.837).

Video: Javier Baez wins Silver Slugger Award at second

NL winner: Javier Baez, Cubs (first)

Baez had the potential to invite the same positional vote split as Martinez because he made 75 starts at second and 52 at short (with another 18 at third). Wherever he played, he was one of the most productive players in the league, with an RBI total (111) that trailed only that of Martinez and the A's Khris Davis. Additionally, his .290 average, .326 on-base percentage, .554 slugging percentage, 34 homers, 40 doubles, nine triples and 21 steals were all career bests.

Video: Lindor gets his second career Silver Slugger Award

SHORTSTOP
AL winner: Francisco Lindor, Indians (second)

Lindor continued to assert himself in a field of electric AL shortstops with his second Silver Slugger Award in as many seasons. He tied for the Major League lead in runs (129) and became the first shortstop in MLB history with at least 35 homers (he hit 38), 40 doubles (he hit 42) and 20 stolen bases (he swiped 25) in a single season.

Video: Story earns first career Silver Slugger Award

NL winner: Trevor Story, Rockies (first)

Story made shortstop history of his own. With 37 homers, 42 doubles and 27 steals (all career bests), he became the first shortstop with a 40-double, 30-homer, 25-steal season. He drove in 108 runs, and his .914 OPS was the best of any qualified shortstop in the bigs.

Video: Ramirez wins second career Silver Slugger award

THIRD BASE
AL winner: Jose Ramirez, Indians (second)

Ramirez leads all MLB players in extra-base hits over the last two seasons (172) and, appropriately, has been named a Silver Slugger winner both years. He finished fourth among all AL players in slugging (.552), OPS (.939), RBIs (105), runs (110), total bases (319) and homers (39). He and Lindor are the first Indians teammates to win back-to-back Silver Sluggers since Roberto Alomar and Manny Ramirez in 1999-2000.

Video: Arenado wins fourth career Silver Slugger Award

NL winner: Nolan Arenado, Rockies (fourth)

If Arenado were only busy collecting his six straight Gold Gloves, he'd be an impactful player. But he's mixed in four straight Silver Slugger seasons, too. For the third time in the last four years, he led the NL in homers (38), and his .935 OPS and 111 RBIs were the best among NL third basemen.

OUTFIELD
AL winners: Mookie Betts, Red Sox (second); Mike Trout, Angels (sixth); J.D. Martinez, Red Sox (second, third)

Aaron Judge's second-half wrist injury opened the door for Martinez, who had 219 at-bats as an outfielder vs. 350 as a DH, to command a higher vote tally here. Martinez previously won a Silver Slugger with the Tigers in 2015 (as an outfielder). His overall numbers were what earned him his votes in 2018, but it's worth noting that his numbers as an outfielder (.384/.450/.680 slash) were actually even better than his numbers as a DH (.297/.373/.597).

Video: J.D. Martinez wins second career Silver Slugger award

Martinez is not the first player to receive votes at multiple positions in the same season. In fact, it happened a few times this year. Ramirez got votes at second base and third base in AL, while Baez got votes at second base at shortstop in the NL. They ended up winning at third and second, respectively. Meanwhile, Oakland's Davis got votes in the outfield and at DH in the AL but didn't win at either spot.

Betts and Trout, meanwhile, were no-brainers.

Video: Mike Trout wins his sixth career Silver Slugger Award

Trout, who has now collected a Silver Slugger in six of the seven seasons in which he's qualified for the batting title, led all qualified hitters in the Majors in OPS (1.088), and Betts was second (1.078). Trout's OPS and OPS+ (199) were both the best of his Cooperstown-worthy career.

Video: Mookie Betts sets records on way to Silver Slugger

Betts' .346 average was the best in the Majors by 16 points, and he tied Lindor for the Major League lead in runs (129). Betts, who also won a Silver Slugger in 2016, joined Ramirez in becoming baseball's first 30-homer, 30-steal players since 2012.

NL winners: Christian Yelich, Brewers (second); David Peralta, D-backs (first); Nick Markakis, Braves (first)

Yelich already won the NL Hank Aaron Award and now adds his second Silver Slugger. Yelich led the NL in average (.326), slugging (.598), OPS (1.000) and total bases (343), hit for the cycle against the Reds twice (becoming the first to do so against the same team), and finished two homers and one RBI shy of the first NL Triple Crown in 81 years.

So he was an easy selection, whereas Peralta and Markakis (both first-time winners) had a lot of competition for this honor.

Video: Peralta wins first career Silver Slugger Award

Peralta hit a career-high 30 homers, and his .868 OPS ranked fourth among NL qualifiers in the outfield.

Video: Nick Markakis takes Silver Slugger Award in outfield

Markakis had a power surge in his age-34 season, with his highest slugging (.440) and homer total (14) since 2012 and his highest doubles total (43) since 2010.

Video: J.D. first ever to win 2 Silver Sluggers in 1 season

DESIGNATED HITTER
AL winner: J.D. Martinez, Red Sox (second, third)

As noted, Martinez saw the bulk of his playing time here (93 of his 150 games). Overall, he led the Majors in RBIs (130) and total bases (358) while finishing second in homers (43). His .330 average was nearly 40 points higher than his career norm, and his .402 OBP was nearly 50 points higher.

Video: German Marquez wins Silver Slugger Award at pitcher

PITCHER
NL winner: German Marquez, Rockies (first)

Pitchers are obviously graded on a steep curve here. In a year in which pitchers, as a whole, posted an ugly slash line, Marquez hit .300/.300/.350 in 65 plate appearances (his .650 OPS was the highest of any pitcher with at least 35 plate appearances). His homer off a position player (Daniel Descalso) -- a true role reversal if ever there was one -- likely stuck in the minds of voters.

Anthony Castrovince has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2004. Read his columns, listen to his podcast and follow him on Twitter at @Castrovince.

Who will be dealt? Each team's top trade chip

MLB.com @feinsand

Free agency will garner most of the headlines during baseball's Hot Stove season, but this is also a time for MLB's general managers to discuss a plethora of trade options.

Some clubs may be looking to shed salary, while others could be looking ahead at next year's free agents. One thing is certain: Teams are more willing to trade than ever before, meaning we'll see a number of moves in the weeks and months ahead.

Free agency will garner most of the headlines during baseball's Hot Stove season, but this is also a time for MLB's general managers to discuss a plethora of trade options.

Some clubs may be looking to shed salary, while others could be looking ahead at next year's free agents. One thing is certain: Teams are more willing to trade than ever before, meaning we'll see a number of moves in the weeks and months ahead.

The latest MLB free agent and trade rumors for Hot Stove season

Here's a look at one trade candidate from every team:

AMERICAN LEAGUE EAST

Baltimore Orioles: Andrew Cashner
With an $8 million salary in 2019 and a $10 million option for '20, Cashner is a reasonably priced starter who could provide some back-end value for many teams. The Orioles are firmly in rebuilding mode, and they would probably love to shed some of their higher-priced players.

Boston Red Sox: Christian Vazquez
Vazquez signed a team-friendly three-year, $13.5 million contract with the Red Sox that kicks in next season, but his disappointing year at the plate could prompt Boston to try moving him. Sandy Leon and Blake Swihart still remain, though the Sox could try bringing in a better bat behind the plate, as well.

New York Yankees: Miguel Andujar
Sonny Gray was too obvious for this one, as GM Brian Cashman said after the season that he was going to look to trade the disappointing right-hander. Andujar posted a terrific rookie season, but his value may never be higher, questions remain about his defense … and the Yankees might make a play for Manny Machado. If they do, Andujar could be flipped for a controllable pitcher.

Video: NYY@BOS: Andujar's 47th double ties AL rookie record

Tampa Bay Rays: C.J. Cron
Jake Bauers played more innings at first than Cron last season, while No. 2 prospect Brendan McKay is the first baseman of the future. Cron's 30-homer, .816-OPS season in 2018 should make him a valuable asset, and he'll be due a raise from his $2.3 million salary in his second year of arbitration.

Toronto Blue Jays: Brandon Drury
The Blue Jays have an abundance of infielders, and with baseball's top prospect, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., zooming toward the Majors, it's only a matter of time before third base becomes his territory. Drury is a versatile, valuable player with three years of arbitration eligibility remaining, so he could bring back a nice return.

AL CENTRAL

Chicago White Sox: Jose Abreu
Abreu has been a popular name on the trade-rumor mill for more than a year, and although the White Sox are close to finishing their rebuild, Abreu is arbitration-eligible for the final time this offseason and can become a free agent after next season.

Cleveland Indians: Carlos Carrasco
Corey Kluber could have been the choice here given their ages -- Kluber is entering his age-33 season, while Carrasco will be playing at 32 -- and contract situations (Kluber is owed $13 million in 2019 and has club options for '20 and '21 worth $13.5 million and $14 million, respectively; Carrasco will earn $9 million next year and has a $9.5 million club option for '20). Kluber's track record is stronger, so although he may fetch a better return, the Indians would probably prefer to hang on to their ace and deal Carrasco.

Detroit Tigers: Nicholas Castellanos
The Tigers are in a full-on rebuild, and while they won't be able to move the sizeable contracts of Miguel Cabrera or Jordan Zimmermann, Castellanos is a huge chip for GM Al Avila. Fresh off a 23-homer, .854-OPS season, Castellanos has two years of club control left and should bring back some value.

Kansas City Royals: Danny Duffy
The Royals contemplated trading Duffy last summer, but the left-hander had a rough outing the week before the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline, then got knocked around twice in August before landing on the DL with a left shoulder injury. Trading him might be difficult because of the late-season injury and his salary (he has three years and $46 million left on his contract), but if the chance to deal him for value presents itself, the Royals could make a move.

Minnesota Twins: Jake Odorizzi
Odorizzi will get a raise from his $6.3 million salary in his final year of arbitration, and while he had a decent season for the Twins in 2018, Minnesota could flip him a year before he becomes a free agent.

AL WEST

Houston Astros: Hector Rondon
With Roberto Osuna, Ryan Pressly, Joe Smith, Collin McHugh and Josh James all returning, Rondon and his $4.5 million salary might prove to be an expendable piece for the Astros.

Los Angeles Angels: Kole Calhoun
Three of the Angels' top six prospects are outfielders, and given that Mike Trout and Justin Upton aren't going anywhere, Calhoun could be on the move if the Halos can get a pitcher in return. He's due $10.5 million in 2019 with a $14 million club option for '20.

Oakland Athletics: Mike Fiers
Fiers earned $6 million last season and has one more year of club control, but given the raises coming to Khris Davis and Oakland's 11 other arbitration-eligible players, Fiers -- who had his best season in three years -- could be moved to free up some payroll.

Seattle Mariners: James Paxton
Mike Zunino is already gone from Seattle, traded to Tampa Bay in a five-player deal that landed center fielder Mallex Smith with the Mariners. GM Jerry Dipoto is trying to reshape the roster this offseason, and with Mitch Haniger, Edwin Diaz and Marco Gonzales reportedly not on the block, no player would bring back a bigger return than Paxton, the hard-throwing lefty who, despite a lengthy injury history, is considered by many to be one of the top southpaws in the league.

Texas Rangers: Joey Gallo
Shin-Soo Choo had a terrific year, but with $42 million due to him over the next two years, his contract will be tough to move. Gallo isn't arbitration-eligible until 2020, and with four years of club control and a powerful bat, he would be valued by many teams and might be moved for a starting pitcher. Texas has Ronald Guzman ready to take over full-time at first base should Gallo be moved.

Video: TEX@LAA: Gallo crushes 40th homer of season to center

NATIONAL LEAGUE EAST

Atlanta Braves: Johan Camargo
Austin Riley, the Braves' No. 5 prospect (and No. 43 on MLB Pipeline's Top 100), posted an .882 OPS at three Minor League levels last year, moving closer to the Majors. Camargo had a very solid season in 2018 (.806 OPS, 19 homers), but Riley remains the future at the hot corner. Atlanta might be able to move Camargo for an arm.

Miami Marlins: J.T. Realmuto
A year after trading away Giancarlo Stanton, Christian Yelich, Marcell Ozuna and Gordon, the Marlins could decide to move their All-Star catcher for a haul of prospects -- and there would be no shortage of teams lining up to make a deal.

• Marlins' three main options for Realmuto

Video: Bowman: Braves could pursue Realmuto trade

New York Mets: Zack Wheeler
Many believed Wheeler would be traded last summer, but the Mets held on to him. He delivered a strong season (3.31 ERA in 182 1/3 innings) that boosted his value, and with one year remaining until Wheeler becomes a free agent, new Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen could bring back a nice return for the right-hander if he decides to move him.

Philadelphia Phillies: Maikel Franco
Franco had a bounce-back season in 2018, his .780 OPS representing a 90-point boost from the previous year. But his streaky nature -- Franco struggled badly for most of May and August -- and inconsistent defense might prompt the Phillies to try moving him elsewhere.

Washington Nationals: Michael A. Taylor
With Juan Soto, Victor Robles and Adam Eaton in the outfield -- not to mention the potential return of Bryce Harper -- Taylor would appear to be the odd man out. He should draw interest from several teams and bring something of value back to the Nationals.

NL CENTRAL

Chicago Cubs: Ian Happ
The 24-year-old infielder/outfielder was unable to build on his impressive rookie campaign as virtually every one of his offensive statistics regressed from 2017. Happ's versatility, talent and age make him an ideal target for any team -- small- or large-market -- and given the Cubs' glut of young position players, dealing from that strength to acquire pitching would make sense.

Cincinnati Reds: Billy Hamilton
Hamilton has been on the trade block before and will likely be there again this offseason. The Reds need pitching, which could lead to them moving Hamilton or fellow outfielder Scott Schebler.

Milwaukee Brewers: Corey Ray
Brewers GM David Stearns isn't big on trading his top prospects, but with Yelich, Lorenzo Cain and Ryan Braun locked into the outfield, Milwaukee could dangle its No. 2 prospect in an effort to acquire some pitching. Ray hit 27 home runs, stole 37 bases and posted an .801 OPS at Double-A last season.

Video: Ray, Brown named Brewers' Minor League POY

Pittsburgh Pirates: Francisco Cervelli
The Pirates posted a winning record in 2018 despite trading away Gerrit Cole and Andrew McCutchen, so the idea of dealing their starting catcher isn't unrealistic. Cervelli's $11.5 million salary is the highest on the team, and he's slated to become a free agent after next season. Elias Diaz could take over behind the plate.

St. Louis Cardinals: Jose Martinez
Martinez's bat has never been a question, evidenced by his career .309 average and .850 OPS. His defense, however, has proven to be less than ideal, making him a prime candidate to be traded to an AL club where he could become a full-time DH.

NL WEST

Arizona D-backs: Paul Goldschmidt
Goldschmidt has one year of club control remaining before becoming a free agent at the end of the 2019 season. If the D-backs decide they won't be able to re-sign him to a new deal, they could opt to move the franchise first baseman rather than letting him walk for Draft picks. This might not be a likely scenario given Arizona's desire to contend, but it can't be completely ruled out, either.

Video: D-backs pick up Goldschmidt's 2019 option

Colorado Rockies: Raimel Tapia
Tapia didn't find much of a role with the Rockies in 2018, playing in only 25 games during stints in July and September. He posted an .847 OPS with 11 homers and 21 stolen bases in 105 games at Triple-A, so a team in need of speed might have interest in Tapia, who is out of Minor League options.

Los Angeles Dodgers: Matt Kemp
Kemp had a solid regular season, hitting 21 home runs with an .818 OPS in 146 games, but he disappeared in the postseason, hitting one home run with three RBIs with a .548 OPS in 13 games. Kemp is owed $21.5 million in the final year of his eight-year contract, and the Dodgers would surely love to save at least part of that salary.

San Diego Padres: Craig Stammen
Stammen has performed well during his two years with San Diego, posting a 2.73 ERA in 2018 with 10 strikeouts per nine innings and a 5-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio. A contender would likely give the Padres something of value for Stammen, who is due $2.25 million and will be a free agent after 2019, his age-35 season.

San Francisco Giants: Joe Panik
Panik had a very disappointing 2018, but with two years of club control remaining, a change of scenery could be just the thing to spark his game. The Giants don't have an internal candidate to replace Panik at second base, though the position is as deep as any in this year's market, so finding a new second baseman shouldn't be very difficult.

Mark Feinsand, an executive reporter, originally joined MLB.com as a reporter in 2001.