Red Sox, Tigers agree to Cespedes-Porcello swap
SAN DIEGO (AP) -- The Boston Red Sox have traded outfielder Yoenis Cespedes to the Detroit Tigers for pitcher Rick Porcello.
Pitchers Alex Wilson and Gabe Speier also went to Detroit as part of the trade, which the Tigers announced Thursday.
The Red Sox acquired Cespedes in July in the deal that sent Jon Lester to Oakland. Cespedes finished the year with a .260 average, 22 home runs and 100 RBIs.
The 29-year-old Cespedes gives Detroit another power-hitting presence in the middle of its lineup, along with Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez, but the Cuban slugger came at a significant price. Porcello does not turn 26 until later this month, and he is coming off a season in which he set career bests with 15 wins, a 3.43 ERA and 204 2-3 innings pitched.
Cespedes and Porcello could both be free agents after this season. Cespedes will make $10.5 million in 2015. Porcello is arbitration eligible after making $8.5 million this year.
Detroit already made one addition to its outfield this offseason, acquiring speedy center fielder Anthony Gose from Toronto. Cespedes joins a group of outfielders that also includes J.D. Martinez and Rajai Davis. If J.D. Martinez can repeat his 23-homer performance of 2014, the Tigers should have plenty of power threats.
The Red Sox were in the market for pitching after they were unable to bring Lester back as a free agent, and Porcello brings plenty of experience. He made his debut with Detroit in 2009 as a 20-year-old, and he's been a mainstay in the Tigers' rotation ever since.
Porcello has held hitters to a 53 percent groundball rate, a skill that may be more useful at Fenway Park than in Detroit.
Major transactions of MLB offseason