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Rays trade Matt Joyce to Angels for relief pitcher

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Rays have traded Matt Joyce to the Angels, according to Yahoo's Tim Brown, in exchange for RHP Kevin Jepsen.

Jepsen has made a relief appearance for the Angels in every season since 2008, but remains under team control through 2016.

Last season was a banner year for the 30-year old. Appearing in 74 games with 65.0 innings pitched, Jepsen notched a 2.63 ERA and 2.78 FIP, including a career best 79.2% LOB% and 28.9% strikeout rate, as well as an 8.9% walk rate.

In his second year of arbitration, Jepsen made $1.46 million, and is projected for a $2.6 million salary next season. This stands in contrast to Joyce's anticipated $4.9 million, using the figures from MLB Trade Rumors.

The Rays already had a crowded outfield, thanks to the presence of Desmond Jennings and Wil Myers, the contract of David DeJesus, and the emergence of Kevin Kiermaier. That's not to mention outfielder Brandon Guyer and the utility ability of Ben Zobrist, so the leverage was not in the Rays favor.

With that recognized, there were certainly many suitors for Joyce, and the return appears to be Jepsen in a one-for-one swap. Joyce should be expected to continue his role as the long end of a platoon at DH once he lands in the Los Angeles suburbs.

SB Nation's Chris Cotillo had reported earlier today that a Matt Joyce move was imminent.