St. Louis Cardinals: Tommy Pham traded to Tampa
By Trevor Hooth
The St. Louis Cardinals have traded OF Tommy Pham to Tampa in exchange for three minor league players.
It is Trade Deadline day and moves will be happening a lot. The St. Louis Cardinals kicked things off by shipping off Tommy Pham. This move is overall kind of weird on the surface, but it is what we have been given.
The Rays sent OF Justin Williams, LHP Genesis Cabrera, and RHP Roel Ramirez to St. Louis in return. Pham has three years of control still, and the highest rated prospect in the deal is Williams, who was number 14 in the Rays system according to MLB Pipeline.
OF Justin Williams
This is the only player with any MLB experience. He played one game, and got one at bat about a week before the deadline. Williams was playing the Durham, the Rays Triple A affiliate, for all of 2018. He was hitting .258 with eight homers. The team expects Williams to report to Memphis.
According to his MLB Pipeline profile, Williams has a hit tool of 55, and a power tool of 50. He is a solid player with the ceiling of being a decent corner outfielder. However, with the depth in the St. Louis Cardinals at the position, his ceiling will be as a good fourth outfielder.
LHP Genesis Cabrera
Cabrera is a 21 year old lefty who was playing with the Rays Double A affiliate. He was signed back in 2013, and has a very live fastball. He has started 20 of his 21 games. There is a chance he can become a starter, but he certainly has the tools to thrive in the bullpen. He is expected to report to Springfield.
His fastball can get up to 97 MPH, and he has an above average slider to pair with it. That is where is bullpen potential lies. His starting potential will surround the development of his changeup. Right now that is a below average pitch.
RHP Roel Ramirez
He is the only player not ranked in the Rays system. Ramirez was drafted by the Rays in the eighth round back in 2013. He’s been pitching most of the year with Montgomery, the Rays Double A affiliate.
Ramirez flashes some strikeout stuff, posting over 10 K/9 this season. He is not a ground ball pitcher, he’s caused 35 percent grounders according to Fangraphs. The righty is expected to report to Springfield.
Williams and Cabrera both drop into the St. Louis Cardinals top prospects, the outfielder ranks ninth, and the southpaw 14th. Overall, it seems like a light return for Pham, But, this could just be a precursor move. If nothing else, it clears the outfield.
I do not like the trade. The pitchers could help down road, but Williams seems blocked. There is a bigger plan here, but I can’t quite see it. Between what is already in the majors, Tyler O’Niell, and Oscar Mercado, there is not a lot of room for more outfielders.