MOBILE, Ala. (August 31, 2017) - The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have made a trade with the Detroit Tigers involving Mobile BayBears right-handed pitcher Grayson Long . Long heads to the Tigers organization as part of a deal to receive former BayBears outfielder Justin Upton .
Long, 23, was a Southern League Mid-Season All-Star and had the lowest ERA (2.52) in the circuit among qualifiers. In 23 starts with Mobile, he went 8-6 and allowed just 34 earned runs in 121 2/3 innings pitched, with 38 walks and 111 strikeouts. Long was named the Southern League's Pitcher of the Week on July 17 after tossing 12 scoreless innings, leading the BayBears to a pair of shutout wins against Birmingham and Tennessee.
Long only allowed more than three earned runs in three of his 26 outings this year, combined between Mobile and Class A Advanced Inland Empire. He took a no-hitter into the sixth inning on May 26 against Birmingham before allowing a one-out infield single. Long did not allow an earned run in his last six road starts, dating back to July 1 at Jacksonville (33 2/3 consecutive innings).
The Mont Belvieu, Texas native was selected by the Angels in the third round of the 2015 First-Year Player Draft out of Texas A&M University. Long made three starts with Inland Empire to begin the season before joining the BayBears on April 20. He was the No. 9 prospect in the Angels organization, according to MLB Pipeline, prior to the trade.
Upton, 30, is a four-time Major League All-Star who has spent the past two seasons with Detroit. After slashing .309/.399/.556 with 13 home runs and 53 RBI in 71 games with the BayBears in 2007, he was promoted straight to Arizona, making his MLB debut with the Diamondbacks on August 2, 2007.
Upton garnered several awards following the 2007 season, including being named USA Today's Minor League Player of the Year, a Baseball America Minor League All-Star, and a Southern League Post-Season All-Star. He also represented the Diamondbacks organization in the All-Star Futures Game in San Francisco.
In 125 games with the Tigers this year, Upton had a .279 average with 28 home runs and 94 RBI. He has played in 1,462 Major League games with four different teams and in addition to his four All-Star selections, he also won the Silver Slugger Award in 2011 and 2014.
The Norfolk, Va., native was originally selected by the Diamondbacks with the first overall pick of the 2005 First-Year Player Draft out of Great Bridge High School (Chesapeake, Va.).
In an additional move, catcher Jose Briceno has been promoted to Triple-A Salt Lake. He played in three Triple-A games with the Bees last season.
Briceno, 24, was a member of the BayBears Opening Day roster and spent the entire 2017 season with Mobile. He ranked third on the team with nine home runs and had the third-highest caught-stealing percentage (.410) in the Southern League, throwing out 34-of-83 runners attempting to steal. Briceno was named the Angels Minor League Defender of the Month in April.
The Caracas, Venezuela native was acquired by the Angels in a trade with the Atlanta Braves on November 12, 2015. Briceno was originally a member of the Colorado Rockies organization, where he was named a MiLB.com Rockies Organization All-Star in 2014.
In a pair of corresponding moves, infielder Matt McCann joins the BayBears from Rookie-level Orem, and right-handed pitcher Jeremy Rhoades has been activated off of the 7-day disabled list.
The BayBears begin a five-game home series against the Biloxi Shuckers Thursday at 6:35 p.m. CT. Live coverage can be seen on MiLB.tv (subscription required, promo code: BAYBEARS) and heard on the BayBears Broadcast Network, the TuneIn Radio App, and the MiLB First Pitch App, with the Countdown to First Pitch starting at 6:15 p.m. CT.
Tickets are available as low as $7 (advance) and $8 (day of the game). Kids, active and retired military, and senior citizens receive $2 off the day-of-game ticket price. Single-game tickets are available online or by calling (251) 479-BEAR (2327).
The 2018 BayBears schedule has been released and is available by clicking here. Game times and promotions will be announced at a later date.
About the Mobile BayBears
The Mobile BayBears are the Double-A affiliate of the Los Angeles of Anaheim and play their games at Hank Aaron Stadium in Mobile, Alabama. The BayBears were founded in 1997 and have won four Southern League titles in 1998, 2004, 2011, and 2012. Additionally, the 1998 and 2011 championship squads were named Minor League Team of the Year by Baseball America. More than 160 former BayBears have reached the Major League level, including All-Stars Max Scherzer, Paul Goldschmidt, Jake Peavy, Carlos Gonzalez, and Justin Upton. For more information on the Mobile BayBears and Hank Aaron Stadium, please visit MobileBayBears.com, call (251) 479-BEAR (2327), or contact Steve Goldberg via email at Steve@MobileBayBears.com.