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MLB Offseason Round-Up: Braves Make Stunning Trade, Reds Add Montas

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Chris Sale, MLB offseason

This is one in a series of daily articles highlighting the latest news and notes from the MLB offseason. 

Over the course of the MLB offseason, there are some moves that you can see coming from a mile away and some others that seemingly come out of nowhere. The latter took place on Saturday.

The Atlanta Braves and Boston Red Sox got together for a shocking trade that netted Atlanta starting pitcher Chris Sale from the Red Sox. In return, Boston acquired soon-to-be 23-year-old infielder Vaughn Grissom.

Boston is also covering $17 million of Sale’s $27.5 million salary for next season, according to Alex Speier of the Boston Globe. Sale waived his no-trade clause to finalize the deal.

Sale joins an already-strong Braves’ rotation for next season. When healthy, Sale has proved to be one of the better pitchers in baseball throughout his career. The 13-year-veteran is 120-80 in his career with a 3.10 ERA. He was an All-Star seven-consecutive seasons from 2012-18 and finished in the top six in the Cy Young race every season during that stretch.

Last year in Boston, Sale made 20 starts, his most in a season since 2019, and went 6-5 with a 4.30 ERA/3.80 FIP with 125 strikeouts in 102.2 innings.

Grissom is a former top prospect who burst onto the scene during his rookie campaign in 2022. In 41 games that year, Grissom hit .291 with a .792 OPS, five home runs, 18 RBIs and five steals. He appeared in only 23 games for the Braves last season and struggled to the tune of a .659 OPS.

Grissom is expected to receive more playing time and has a chance to be their starting second baseman moving forward.

REDS ADD ANOTHER STARTER

For the second time this MLB offseason, the Cincinnati Reds have added to their rotation. After adding Nick Martinez earlier in the winter, the Reds have agreed to a one-year, $16 million deal, according to Jon Heyman of the New York Post.

Montas was injured for essentially all of last season while with the Yankees and made a lone appearance at the end of the year. In his career, the 30-year-old right-hander has gone 37-35 with a 3.90 ERA in 130 appearances/99 starts between his time with the Yankees and Oakland A’s.

In addition to Montas and Martinez, the Reds have added infielder Jeimer Candelario and relief pitcher Emilio Pagan as free agents.

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