Wilmington, DE - The Wilmington Blue Rocks' parent-club, the Kansas City Royals, made a major splash through the trade market on Sunday night, and they used three former Blue Rocks to facilitate the deal. Kansas City acquired former Major League All-Star James Shields and fellow right-handed hurler Wade Davis in exchange for Wil Myers, Jake Odorizzi, Mike Montgomery and
Myers, Odorizzi and Montgomery had all spent time in Wilmington.
Myers, who was a Blue Rock during the second half of the 2010 season when he hit .346 with 18 doubles and 38 RBIs in 58 games, is the centerpiece of the deal. The former catcher, who now plays corner outfield, was voted the Minor League Player of the Year in 2012.
Odorizzi made his Major League debut in September, appearing in a pair of games for Kansas City. The right-hander was a Blue Rock in 2011, posting a scant 2.87 ERA and 103 strikeouts in 15 starts and 78.1 innings pitched. Prior to arriving in Kansas City in 2012, he split time between Double-A Northwest Arkansas and Triple-A Omaha, going a combined 15-5 with a 3.03 ERA.
Montgomery was considered the Royals top pitching prospect when he starred for Wilmington in 2009, going 4-1 with a 2.25 ERA in nine starts for the Blue Rocks. He has struggled since, getting demoted from Triple-A in 2012 after turning in a 5.69 ERA in 17 starts for Omaha.
Shields was an All-Star in 2011, when he posted a 16-12 mark and 2.82 ERA. The effort was good enough for a third-place finish in the American League Cy Young vote. The right-hander went 15-10 with a 3.52 ERA last season. He is due to receive $10.5 million in 2013 and has a club option for $12 million in 2014 with a $1 million buyout.
Davis had been a starter from 2009-11, but shifted to the Tampa Bay bullpen last season. The move suited him well, as he went 3-0 with a 2.43 earned run average as a reliever.
The Blue Rocks begin their 2013 season on April 5 in Myrtle Beach. After a six-game road trip, the Rocks return to Wilmington for the home opener on Friday, April 12 at 7:05 p.m. Group tickets and mini plans for the 2013 campaign are on sale now by visiting bluerocks.com.