Mark Feinsand is reporting that the Colorado Rockies have traded CJ Cron and Randal Grichuk to the Los Angeles Angels.
BREAKING: The Angels are acquiring OF Randal Grichuk and 1B C.J. Cron from the Rockies, per source. Colorado gets back RHP Jake Madden and LHP Mason Albright.— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) July 31, 2023
For Cron, it marks a return to the team where his career began. After having an All-Star season in 2022, Cron struggled with back injuries for much of 2023. However, he has recently returned to form and now has 11 home runs in 220 plate appearances and an OPS+ of 96. It’s worth noting that Cron will probably be limited to DH duties given his back issues.
Like Cron, Grichuk missed the beginning of the season with an injury, but July has seen his bat come alive. He is currently slashing .312/.367/.502 with eight home runs in 259 plate appearances. His OPS+ is 123.
The Rockies will pay down Grichuk’s and Cron’s salaries.
Rockies will pay half what’s owed Grichuk and Cron — about $2M https://t.co/yWgk6mkYHV— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) July 31, 2023
Both players will be free agents at the end of the season, and the trade will reunite them with former teammates Mike Moustakas and Carlos Estévez.
In return, the Rockies will receive two pitching prospects, Jake Madden and Mason Albright:
JMadden is with the Low-A Inland Empire 66ers. The fourth-round draft pick of the 2022 draft attended Northwest Florida State Junior College.
According to MLB Pipeline, Madden is the Angel’s #8 prospect. The righty has a fastball, slider, and changeup. As MLB Pipeline notes,
There isn’t much track record with Madden, but there is a lot to work with. The 6-foot-6 right-hander has a loose arm and a starting pitcher’s repertoire. He was up to 98 mph with his fastball last spring and it can be heavy, getting ground-ball outs when he keeps it down in the zone, breaking bats when he isn’t missing them. His mid-80s slider has improved and could be a true out pitch if he stays on top of it, and he misses bats with his upper-80s changeup as well.
Click here to for video.
Mason Albright is ranked #28 on MLB Pipeline. The lefty is Madden’s teammate on the 66ers and has a fastball, curveball, cutter, and changeup. He went in the 12th round of the 2021 draft. (He was the Angels’ only high school pitcher in a draft class almost comprised exclusively of college pitchers.)
As MLB Pipeline observes,
Albright is not your prototypical high school projection case, as the six-footer is more about his feel for pitching than raw stuff. His fastball typically has been sitting in the 90-92 mph range, though it can get as high as 94. It also plays up because he can command it and misses bats thanks to deception in his delivery. His curve has the chance to be a solid pitch, though it can get slurvy at times, and he has feel for his changeup and is developing a cutter.
See him in action here.
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