Yasiel Puig Reunites with Turner Ward as Dodgers & Reds Complete 7-Player Trade

(Sports Illustrated photo)

The Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday afternoon acquired minor league infielder Jeter Downs, minor league right-handed pitcher Josiah Gray and right-handed pitcher Homer Bailey from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for catcher/infielder Kyle Farmer, outfielders Matt Kemp and Yasiel Puig, left-handed pitcher Alex Wood and cash considerations.

Downs, 20, was the Reds’ first-round pick (No. 32 overall) in the 2017 MLB draft and last year spent his entire season at Single-A Dayton, where he hit .257 with 13 homers, 23 doubles, 47 RBI and 37 stolen bases in 120 games. Last season, Downs appeared in 73 games at second base (71 starts) and 43 at shortstop (41 starts). The native of Colombia played his high school baseball in Miami Gardens, FL.

Gray, who turned 21 today, was Cincinnati’s second round selection (No. 72 overall) in last year’s draft. The right-hander spent his first year of professional baseball at Rookie-level Greenville in the Appalachian League and went 2-2 with a 2.58 ERA (15 ER/52.1 IP) in 12 starts. Gray struck out 59 batters and walked just 17 while posting a WHIP of 0.88. The New Rochelle, NY native attended LeMoyne college in Syracuse, NY.

Bailey, 32, was 1-14 with a 6.09 ERA last season in 20 starts for the Reds. In his career, the Texas native is 67-77 with a 4.56 ERA in 212 starts, all with Cincinnati.

Farmer, 28, was drafted by the Dodgers in 2013 out of the University of Georgia and made his Major League debut on July 30, 2017. In two seasons with Los Angeles, Farmer hit .250 (22-for-88) in 59 games, primarily at third base.

Kemp, 34, hit .290 with 25 homers and 85 RBI in 146 games last year, his first as a Dodger since playing in Los Angeles from 2006-14. Kemp was named to his third All-Star team in 2018 and homered in Game 1 of the 2018 World Series at Fenway Park.

Puig, 28, has spent his entire career in Los Angeles after being signed out of Cuba in 2012. The power-hitting right fielder hit .267 with 23 homers, 63 RBI and 15 stolen bases during the 2018 campaign, his sixth as a Dodger. In his career, Puig has batted .279 with 108 home runs and 331 RBI, while playing primarily right field. He finished second in the NL Rookie of the Year vote in 2013 and was named to his only All-Star team in 2014.

Wood, 27, was acquired by the Dodgers just before the 2015 trade deadline and went 31-20 with a 3.46 ERA (167 ER/434.2 IP) in 86 games (74 starts) for Los Angeles. He was named to his first All-Star team in 2017 and finished that season going 16-3 with a 2.72 ERA. He started Game 4 of the 2017 World Series and allowed just one run in 7.2 innings in two games during that Fall Classic vs. Houston. The North Carolina native pitched out of the bullpen for the Dodgers during the 2015 and 2018 Postseasons.

The Dodgers 40-man roster now stands at 38 players; however, Bailey is expected to be released not long after the deal becomes official.

(Joe Jareck provided the majority of information furnished in this report)


29 thoughts on “Yasiel Puig Reunites with Turner Ward as Dodgers & Reds Complete 7-Player Trade

  1. Dodgers finally making some real noise this offseason with this rather interesting deal. Aside from getting a pair of annoying contracts off the books in Kemp and Puig, they also get back a couple of decent minor-league prospects to keep their farm system fairly stacked in the meantime. Also glad to see Kyle Farmer getting a chance to play elsewhere as he no longer had a place with the team anymore. Giving up Alex Wood doesn’t really hurt because both Urias and Ferguson are more than capable of filling that void potentially left by him. Crossing my fingers they’re already gearing up to get Realmuto out of Miami next because I stand by what I said in one of my previous articles on here: adding him will surely keep their WS window open for at least the remainder of his current contract. Offering a trade package centered around Verdugo and one of their top catching prospects (Will Smith? Keibert Ruiz?) would probably do it, but we’ll see. Going after Harper and/or Kluber’s fine and all, but Realmuto’s THE big fish that needs to be reeled in if the Dodgers have any chance of staying in title contention next year at the very least…

      1. Told you I’d drop by whenever I can. Might be seeing more of me around here pretty soon the way the Dodger front office has been handling their business of late. Still don’t know what to make of that Joe Kelly signing, but there’s no doubt of what he can do out of the pen when he’s got his rhythm going. All I know is Kenley’s been worked to death two postseasons in a row now and Baez never really saw the light of day in the WS last season even though he clearly turned a corner in his ongoing development as a late-inning RP. This upcoming spring training ought to tell us more in terms of how the roster’s gonna shake out this time around.

      2. Yeah, we need to have Manuel do a complete workup on Gray and Downs so we can get excited about them before Andrew trades them this weekend.

    1. Hey Manuel. Good to see you back here. I share your feelings about Farmer. Hopefully he’ll get some playing time in Cincy. A lot of people seem to assume AF will make an all-out attempt to sign Harper. I’m not so sure about that. We may yet wind up with Pollock or even Haniger. Those two Reds prospects may not stay here very long. Every comment I’ve read online in the past half hour about Jeter Downs raves about him. The fun has begun. Let’s see where it leads us.

      1. Nah, to me it’s Realmuto or bust. Swapping out OFs is hardly productive at this point as the Dodgers are plenty deep in that catefory, but adding a championship-caliber backstop like him would be a total game changer in my eyes. Had enough of Grandal coming up painfully short in the playoff two straight years in a row. Dodgers get that guy FIRST, everything else is pretty much gravy moving forward.

  2. I will definitely need a few days to digest what went down today. This is not a baseball trade. This is a financial trade pure and simple. The Dodgers cleared space, Bailey will never pitch a game for them, the 2 kids may well be packages in a deal for Kluber or Realmuto, but to me the bottom line is that if Friedman does all this and it does not end with Bryce Harper signed, hopefully not for 10 years, it is nothing but wasted movement. They will miss Puig.

  3. Manuel, nice to hear from you again, have missed your takes on the major team, and all things minor league, hope you can be around a little more.

  4. Friedman trying to construct a roster to win in October. The regular season in the West should be a given. We can’t play any worse than last year and won it. It’s all about the playoffs and Wood and Kemp are useless. Puig could be a big distraction next year wo Ward and if he doesn’t play every day. It’s Verdugo’s time anyway. This move opens up a an opening for an impact playoff player like Kluber, Realmuto or Harper. I’m betting on Harper so we keep Verdugo

  5. I’d like to see verdugo in dodger blue, but if he gets us kluber, or Realmuto I would be ok with that. I would not give up Bellinger in a Realmuto trade, the marlins are crazy with that request.

  6. I read Baileys cap number is only 17.5 million this season, I’m assuming the buyout goes against next seasons’ cap.

  7. There’s more to come. I won’t be surprised to see another starter AND Harper. Not sure about Realmuto, but it could happen. I believe it likely we go by $206M. I like this. Feels like we are going after Boston, Houston and New York.

    1. No. No Gennett, which is in a way disappointing but there must be a plan in play. If not Kluber, Realmuto, DJ, Harper, or Stanton then it must be about 2020. We just have to wait to see what Friedman has in mind. He just shipped out a lot of offense and 150 innings of 3.5 ERA. All of that will not only need to be replaced, it will need to be improved upon to catch the better teams. I’ll reserve judgment until the play is complete.

      In reading other blogs this morning I’m finding myself a bit baffled by fan reaction. So many people jumping to judgment. And jef, what’s with that guy that continues to call people who post anywhere but his site stupid? Everybody’s a moron except those that cuddle up to him.

      The move with Cincinnati is just the beginning. Yeah, the Reds got better, and we didn’t. But we are not done. Patience. I think it will be big. I hope it will be. If not, then here we go again… we win the West and roll the bones again in the playoffs. Same sh*t, different year. But……. maybe…… just maybe……

      1. And Puig will come back to haunt the Dodgers with his bat, lazer arm, and steals. The man is pure “Puig Iron”!

  8. I have given it a day to see how the trade wore on me. Well it’s been a day and it was a crap deal then and still is a crap deal now. By trading all your excess assets in one shot and not getting anything in return you have cornered yourself. Sure you saved $24 million. Congrats Andy. For that couch cushion change savings you gave up a middle rotation starter who will be #1 in Cincy, a 5 tool RF still young at 28 with the BEST arm in baseball and the comeback player of the year. Kemp doesn’t bother me but Puig and Wood do. So now you have assured yourself of a lefty heavy lineup and all all lefty OF the only question is our RF Harper or Verdugo. If you want Realmuto then guess what? Bye bye Verdugo and possibly Ruiz too. The least Andy could have done was make Cincy give us the Trammel kid who both Cleveland and Miami had interest in but he settled and now he looks like an idiot. Reds fans have to be over the moon.

    1. He may eventually look like an idiot Alex, but we don’t know how this story ends. Hopefully we shed payroll for a reason. Until that reason is made known, it’s too early to pass judgment. When all is said and done, we may have a Forsythe lineup, a Latos rotation and a Wilmer Font bullpen.


      Let’s just take a breath and wait. If this proves to be nothing more than a salary dump, then I’ll join the protest.

  9. Alex, you make a good point about trading a lot of his assets in one trade, but I’m with scoop on this, you have to wait to see what Andrew does with the new prospects, and money. If he does nothing, I will scream, and rant right along side you.

  10. On a side note, we don’t have to talk about who is going to get released, to make room on the forty man roster, for Kelly, any more.

    1. Miami doesn’t. They can finish last in front of an empty stadium with or without him. He does make a lot of sense here for two years. He doesn’t cost money, he only costs prospects. He and Harper together more than make up for the oWAR we sent to Cincinnati. Worth Verdugo? Yeah.

      1. If we wind up getting Realmuto we need to trade Barnes and keep Gale. When you have players named Rocky Gale and Jeter Downs on your roster you should not be trading them. Skill level be damned.

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