The Detroit Tigers have traded Ian Kinsler to the Los Angeles Angels per Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic.
The two prospects coming back to the Tigers will be outfielder Troy Montgomery and right-handed pitcher Wilkel Hernandez. They were ranked No. 20 and No. 24 in the Angels system, respectively.
Montgomery was an eighth round pick out of Ohio State in the 2016 draft. He hit well at High-A last season and even made a cameo at Double-A. He projects as a speedy, left-handed hitting fourth outfielder at the major league level. At age 23, he could make his debut sooner rather than later.
The real prize is 18-year-old Wilkel Hernandez. Hernandez posted strong numbers in rookie ball last year for the Angels. He is a ways away, but has what Baseball Prospectur writer Mark Anderson calls “gobs of potential”.
I know Tigers fans were hoping for a bit more to part with the fan-favorite, but at least the Angels are taking on Kinsler’s entire contract, freeing up some money for the team as they enter rebuilding mode.
Update 9:00 PM: The deal is finally official as reported by Ken Rosenthal.
Katie Strang of the Athletic Detroit is reporting the Tigers are getting two prospects back.
Update 8:02 PM: Per Ken Rosenthal, any delay so far has to do with his no-trade clause.
Update: It seems the Detroit Tigers aren’t sending Kinsler out the door just yet per Buster Onley of ESPN.
Ian Kinsler is on the move, he’s heading out west, but the Detroit Tigers have yet to confirm the deal with the Angels.
Per Bob Nightengale, Kinsler had to waive his no-trade clause-the Angels was one of the teams on his no-trade list. Kinsler had iterated that he’d be willing to stay with the Detroit Tigers during the rebuilding phase, but if he were traded he’d prefer a contender.
The Angels brought back Justin Upton and won the Ohtani sweepstakes signaling that they’re looking to be a serious contender this season. Last season the Angels went 80-82 but the acquisition of Ohtani and Kinsler show that they’re more than capable of a playoff berth in the 2018 season.
Kinsler, 35, hit .275, 78 home runs in 607 games over the last four seasons with the Detroit Tigers. He took home the American League Golden Glove in 2016. Over his career, the second baseman has a batting average of .273 with 234 home runs and 225 stolen bases. As well he’s a four-time all-star.
2017 saw the worst season of his career as the Detroit Tigers second baseman hit .236 with 22 home runs, 52 RBIs, and 14 stolen bases.
It’s highly unlikely the Detroit Tigers will be able to poach one of the Angels top prospects and we at least know that Mike Trout isn’t involved in the trade.