On Sunday, the San Diego Padres traded minor-league catching prospect Janigson Villalobos to the Minnesota Twins in order to acquire veteran relief pitcher Phil Hughes, cash considerations, and the 74th pick in the 2018 MLB draft.
The Padres will hope that Hughes can bring back some of his early career magic now that he’s returning to his home state of California. Since undergoing thoracic outlet surgery in 2016, Hughes’ stats have been underwhelming, putting up a 5.99 ERA after pitching 124 innings since the procedure. Nevertheless, Hughes is still a veteran pitcher that could bring that much more experience to the Padres bullpen.
In all likelihood, though, it was the 74th round of the draft pick that was the most alluring part of the deal for the San Diego Padres. The Padres will now have four picks in the top 84 of this year’s draft after giving up their second round pick to acquire first baseman Eric Hosmer, including the 7th pick, the 38th pick, the 74th pick, and the 84th pick. The trade will also allow San Diego to reduce their 2019 salary by $7 million, as Minnesota will take on the rest of Hughes’ 2018 salary and half of his 2019 salary for a total of $13.2 million.
The Minnesota Twins, meanwhile, were able to add some depth to their catching lineup – something the team has really been needing – by acquiring the promising rookie Janigson Villalobos. Villalobos‘ batting in his rookie season was respectable and is another point of value for the Twins, as he was able to hit .275/.367/.388 last season.