Giants Acquire Evan Longoria From Rays in Blockbuster

Lawrence Cooper
December 21, 2017

After being linked in trade rumors earlier this week, the Tampa Bay Rays have struck a deal with the San Francisco Giants to send All-Star third baseman Evan Longoria to the Bay Area. The Giants also are sending right-hander Stephen Woods and left-hander Matt Krook to the Rays. He was the AL Rookie of the Year in 2008 and won three Gold Gloves.

Longoria, 32, is coming off a season in which he hit.261 with 20 homers, 36 doubles and 86 RBIs en route to a 3.6 WAR over 156 games.

The Giants finally struck with a big offseason move on Wednesday acquiring third baseman Evan Longoria from the Rays. Pablo Sandoval and Kelby Tomlinson platooned at the position in 2017 for San Francisco, but neither player provided much at all offensively. By adding Longoria and dumping Span's salary in the same deal, the franchise adds just $2.5 million to its bottom line for next season as Longoria is scheduled to make $13.5 million in 2018.

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"Evan is our greatest Ray", Tampa Bay principal owner Stuart Sternberg said in a statement. They had a trade in place for NL most valuable player Giancarlo Stanton, but Stanton used his no-trade clause to veto the deal and ultimately agreed to a trade to the New York Yankees. Not to say Longoria is not an upgrade, but he's not the same Gold Glove/MVP Caliber player anymore.

The greatest player in Rays franchise history is moving on. The man known for phrases like "this is awesome baby!" and "diaper dandy" was more into telling the Tampa Bay Rays how much they suck. However, Span has just one more year on his contract, so he will be off their books by 2019. Tampa Bay will give the Giants $2 million by this December 31 to cover Longoria's assignment bonus and an additional $3 million by October 31, 2022. He would cash in after the 2012 season by signing a $100 million extension that didn't kick in until 2017, but playing at what amounted to far below market value for almost a decade ensured his continued presence at the Trop. "Evan has been one of the best third basemen in the game over the last decade, and we are thrilled to add him to the organization".

Aside from having to shell out upward of $15 million for Longoria's services in each of the final three seasons on his contract, the Giants should also be concerned about his status as an aging veteran.

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