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Rays Acquire Reliever Burke Badenhop for Minor League Catcher Jake Jefferies

According to Mark Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times the Rays have acquired right handed relief pitcher Burke Badenhop from the Florida Marlins in exchange for minor league catcher Jake Jefferies.

The soon to be 29-year-old Badenhop has spent each of the past four seasons on the Marlins pitching staff, mostly as a reliever. He's amassed a career line of 4.10 ERA/3.69 FIP/3.76 xFIP in 250.2 career innings. His most marketable skill is inducing ground balls. In 63 innings last season he produced a ground ball on 58.5 percent of batters faced. He's predominately faced right handed batters over his career and does have some platoon issues. His FIP against right handed batters is 2.87 as opposed to 4.75 against lefties. The most notable differences appear in the strikeout and walk rates; 4.84 K/BB against RHB and 1.06 vs LHB. I have a feeling, assuming he makes the roster, that Maddon will use much him like he did Dan Wheeler. He should have an excellent shot at the major league bullpen.

Jefferies, a third round pick in the 2008 draft, is a 24-year-old catcher with virtually no offensive value that has just 20 plate appearances above A-ball. I'm not exactly sure why the Marlins would trade a pitcher with real value like Badenhop for a catcher who should aspire to be Jeff Mathis, but I'll definitely take it. This looks like another excellent pickup by the Rays' front office.