Mariners Trade for Cardinals Pitcher Mike Leake

Jim McIsaac  Getty Images
Jim McIsaac Getty Images

31 August, 2017

The Cardinals on Wednesday completed a surprise trade with the Mariners that, most notably, sends veteran right-hander Mike to Seattle in year two of the five-year, $80 million contract he signed with St. Louis.

In the deal, the Cardinals also sent $750,000 in worldwide cap space for the current global signing period to the Mariners.

Ascanio, 21, was signed by the Mariners as an global free agent in 2012 at age 16, and the slick-fielding infielder has compiled a career batting mark of.240 with 15 home runs and 158s RBI in 425 games at the minor-league level.

Ascanio, 21, hit.217 (85 for 392) with 25 doubles, a triple, nine home runs and 44 RBI in 111 games combined between Low A Clinton and High A Modesto. He is expected to be assigned to the high-Class A Palm Beach Cardinals of the Florida State League.

For the Cardinals, this was a way to cut some payroll, while moving in a new direction with an additional prospect to add to the system.

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Leake on the season has an ERA of 4.21 in 2017. Leake is still owed $55 million over the next three seasons according to Spotrac, and getting rid of his salary could help the Cardinals in free agency.

Leake, 29, is 7-12 with a 4.21 ERA this season. They previously traded for Marco Gonzales in July for minor leaguer Tyler O'Neill. You may or may not hear about it on the radio or see it online.

The deal comes before Thursday's deadline for major league teams to acquire a player and have him be eligible for the postseason.

The trade was initially reported by Bob Nightengale of USA Today and Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports.

The Cardinals have an afternoon game in Milwaukee on Wednesday at 1:10 p.m., the pregame show begins on KMOX at 12:15 p.m. He's 2-9 with a 5.78 ERA in his last 16 starts, including a 6.90 ERA in nine starts since the All-Star break. The Cardinals (66-65) are 5½ games out in the NL wild-card race. Starting 2018 with a 1-2-3 of Paxton, Hernandez, and Leake isn't half bad.

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