The St. Louis Cardinals have begun their trade deadline teardown. The Cardinals have traded nominal closer Jordan Hicks to the Toronto Blue Jays for righty pitching prospects Adam Kloffenstein and Sem Robberse, the team announced Sunday.
Hicks is one of several Cardinals' rentals expected to move at the deadline. Lefty Jordan Montgomery e, and righty Jack Flaherty figures to go as well. The Cardinals and Hicks were said to be working on an extension, though apparently the club did not believe they could get it done, so they went ahead with a trade. The trade deadline is 6 p.m. ET on Tuesday.
The Blue Jays are adding Hicks one day after placing closer Jordan Romano . Hicks is the second Cardinals reliever the Blue Jays have acquired this month -- they picked up lefty Génesis Cabrera last week. Once Romano returns, Toronto's bullpen could shake out like this:
- Closer: RHP Jordan Romano
- Setup: RHP Jordan Hicks, LHP Tim Mayza
- Middle: LHP Génesis Cabrera, RHP Yimi García, RHP Nate Pearson, RHP Erik Swanson
- Long: RHP Trevor Richards
Hicks, 27 in September, has a 3.68 ERA in 41 2/3 innings this season, though he's been lights out since shifting to the first base side of the rubber a few weeks ago. He's held opposing hitters to a .210/.288/.238 batting line and zero home runs in 28 2/3 innings since May 1. A 100 mph sinker and the ability to limit homers never go out of style, especially come postseason time.
Robberse, 22, represented the Blue Jays at the Futures Game earlier this month. He is the No. 7 prospect in Toronto's season per Baseball America's midseason update, and they say he has the "look of a pitchability back-of-the-rotation starter." Robberse has a 4.06 ERA with 86 strikeouts in 88 2/3 innings at the Double-A level this season.
Baseball America ranked the 22-year-old Kloffenstein the No. 18 prospect in Toronto's farm system in their midseason update, noting he has a deep six-pitch arsenal and has seen a velocity uptick this season. Kloffenstein has a 3.24 ERA with 105 strikeouts in 89 Double-A innings this season. St. Louis is said to be seeking young starters who can miss bats and Kloffenstein fits.
LAA 3, TOR 2 in 10 innings), the Blue Jays sit in the third and final American League wild-card spot. and could add a righty-hitting outfielder before the deadline.. Even with Sunday's loss (