USATSI_8586788_154511044_lowresAnd the first shoe has dropped as the Rays have traded relief pitcher Kevin Jepsen to the Minnesota Twins, according to Ken Rosenthal. [Update: The deal is now official as the Rays have announced the trade]

The Rays will receive two minor league pitchers from the Twins, according to Marc Topkin. Joel Sherman calls the players “low-level minor league pitchers.

LaVelle E. Neal III reports that the Rays are receiving Chin-Wei Hu and Alexis Tapia.

Hu, a right-hander, has spent most of the season at high-A, although he did make one start at triple-A. Originally signed as an international free agent, Hu is 21 years old and has a 2.38 ERA in 16 starts this season with 79 strikeouts and 23 walks in 90.2 innings.

He was the Twins’ 20th-best prospect according to MLB.com.

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Tapia is a 19-year-old righty out of Venezuela. He has spent this season in both rookie ball and high-A. He has made 8 appearances (6 starts) with a 3.60 ERA and 34 strikeouts in 35 innings.

Kirby Yates has been called up from triple-A to take Jepsen’s spot on the roster.

Topkin adds that he is “getting the sense” that this will be the only deal made by the Rays today.

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15 Comments

  1. Matt says:

    Not a bad deal. Twins fans are pretty upset to lose Hu, was on the up-and-up in their system. Jep was a solid reliever, but he's expendable. I'd rather lose him than Mcgee or Box.

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  2. Dave L says:

    Makes excellent sense.

    Colome sort of raises the talent pool in the pen as a higher leverage RP. Yates will slot in as the lowest leverage guy closing out the losses.

    Kind of hard for current Rays players to buy into this as these two kids are 3 to 5 years away from helping the Rays, but this is the kind of delayed gratification talent resources management that got us where we are today.

    Silverman will come out and say- 'the guys we are getting back from injury are the cavalry that was needed' and he trusts the guys on the 40 man now to take us to the playoffs.

    So we just picked up like 4 live young arms in recent weeks correct? If one or 2 make it as (cheap) quality starters and 1 or 2 make it as quality RP, one day will we will look back and say it was well worth it for 4 combined months of DeJesus and Jepsen way back in '15.

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    • FortMyersDave says:

      Wu could contribute in a couple of seasons at the MLB level and right now the pitching for the Rays has been great, fielding has been shoddy as of late, and the hitting; well lets just say that Derek Shelton has his own "Fire DS"page on Facebook..... The Rays need bats to compete and Stu and Silvermann simply did not want to trade away a strength (pitching) to land a rental like Cespedes or Parra and could not outbid or take in the contract of a guy like Carlos Gomezfor whatever reason and probably did not want to give up what Houston did to get him..... Perhaps once the Rays figure out how many viable starters they have this offseason they will deal a Karns or another arm for a bat; right now with Moore very shaky and Smyly not quite back they could not afford to deal from their real strenght....

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  3. angrybuddha says:

    ...but I want to know who we got back? Tapia & who?

    Exactly.

    Who?

    Yes, Hu.

    That's what I'm asking you. We got who back?

    Precisely.

    [ad infinitum]

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  4. Woodrow744 says:

    I don't think these are the guys Chris Archer had in mind when he tweeted out yesterday.

    Before we all collectively shove the samarai through our solar plexus, let's see how the boys do for the next couple weeks. If we rip off a nice little run, there's hope. I love hope. Maybe Souza sees the ball a bit better, maybe Longo understands that all that talk about him not being "protected" in the lineup is a bunch of B.S. and ups his average 25 points. Maybe Matt Moore remembers he's the next Sandy Koufax. Hell, maybe the Yankees go 2-12! Not predicting, just sayin'.

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    • FortMyersDave says:

      Tonight's game hurt: Beckham and Forsythe spot the BoSox 3 unearned runs that prove to be the difference after Jake McGee blows a lead by letting Napoli rip one..... I really have a prob with Beckham; he fields poorly ( 2 errors tonight) and is batting around 0.235. I suspect the only reason the rays are using him is that they simply hate to give up on the #1 overall pick in the '08 draft.... Still it looks like 85 wins could get the 2nd wildcard spot, not out of reach but these last 2 losses which come via fielding errors hurt. I can understand Archer's frustration as he pitched so well vs the Tigers only to lose via 2 unearned runs set up by Cabrera; and yeah he could of still got out of the inning but fact is that his SS screwed up. It is too bad the rays could not get a bat but obviously they were not ready just to get a rental like Parra or Cespedes and evena guy like Carlos Gomez was probably out of their reach....

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  5. angrybuddha says:

    Following the trade chain...

    2002: D Rays sign FA Lance Carter
    2004: D Rays sign FA Danys Baez
    2006: Baez & Carter traded for Edwin Jackson (& Chuck Tiffany)
    2008: Jackson traded for Matt Joyce
    2014: Joyce traded for Kevin Jepsen
    2015: Jepsen traded for Alexis Tapia & Chih-Wei Hu

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  6. Starmand says:

    According to Topkin, Silverman said they talked about adding offense, but "We don't have a glaring hole that we thought the trade deadline could fill.''

    I have news for Mr. Silverman. We don't see a glaring hole in attendance that we thought the trade deadline could fill.

    Btw, what is Cleveland's payroll this year? Miami? Rays?

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  7. Starmand says:

    IT'S TRUE! IT'S TRUE!

    Saw parts of last night's game and couldn't see a glaring need anywhere.

    Here....have some Kool-Aid....

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  8. Starmand says:

    No excuse. Danny Valencia DFA.

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  9. edward williams says:

    One again, pitching , pitching , pitching, how many championships , "0" oh but i forgot we will play meaningful games in september. lol the joys of being a rays fan, i wonder how many fans hear remember what it was like way back in the devil ray days, it sure is beginning to look a lot like that. Now if we could only get the hit show back , lololol

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    • FortMyersDave says:

      Tim Beckham kind of reminds me of a Devil ray and the way the the Rays' management simply will not admit the overall first round pick of 2008 is a bust is something that Vince Naomoli would do as he was so concerned about saving coin...

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      • OriginalTom says:

        What does playing Beckham have to do with Saving coin?

        It is funny about 6 weeks ago people here were complaining when they sent Beckham back to the minors.

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  10. Starmand says:

    Schadenfreude will not even start to explain it. After all, the ones who "earn" the minimum still get half-a -million for playing like little leaguers.

    Except that the burgers taste better at a LL concession. And cost way less.

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