The Tampa Bay Rays made a very Tampa Bay Rays move on Thursday night, trading away outfielder Tommy Pham to the San Diego Padres for slightly cheaper outfielder Hunter Renfroe plus infield prospect Xavier Edwards.
Given that Pham was among the Rays’ most valuable — and popular — players last season, the move was bound to prompt some questioning. It wasn’t just Rays fans questioning the move though.
We now go live to Rays Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell’s Twitch stream as he learns about the trade:
Warning, the following video contains some profanity.
“We gave Pham up for Renfroe and a damn slapdick prospect?” Snell said, incredulously.
To be fair to Edwards, he isn’t quite a no-name prospect. MLB Pipeline ranks him as the No. 5 prospect in the Padres system, one of the strongest farms in baseball, and the No. 72 prospect overall. As a 19-year-old last season, he hit .322/.375/.396 with 34 steals while splitting time between Class A Fort Wayne and Class A-Advanced Lake Elsinore.
Of course, you can’t blame Snell for being frustrated at losing a teammate for a less well-regarded player and a prospect he may never play with. The Rays won 96 games last year and just made a move in which they gave up the best player. There’s a human side to the business of baseball moves, and sometimes it manifests by yelling “slapdick” on Twitch streams after midnight.
Blake Snell apologizes for slapdick comment
Snell seemed aware enough he might not have given Edwards a fair shake, admitting that he over-reacted later on stream.
“I’m not trying to belittle a minor leaguer,” Snell said. “It’s just super-rude toward that guy. That kid didn’t deserve me calling him a slapdick, let’s be honest ... Tommy’s the man, bro. It’s just hella stupid.”
Unlike most streams on his channel, Snell’s Thursday night session was not saved on his Twitch channel. Naturally, the moment was still well-preserved throughout social media and even on a T-shirt.
Snell was apologetic the following day as well, telling the Tampa Bay Times that his frustration was solely about losing Pham as a teammate:
"I apologized on there just saying I’m sorry I’m just upset we’re losing a guy like Tommy who helped our team in so many ways! Didn’t mean any disrespect to Edwards who I didn’t know who he was until after I said that. I was just sad to lose Tommy. ... Pretty much we could’ve got (Nationals star rookie Juan) Soto, I was just sad to lose Tommy. It’s tough losing someone you respect so much and enjoy being around.''
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