The Major League Trade Deadline has come and gone, with a number of a big names changing addresses.There were also 32 Minor League players dealt on July 31, players who will be forced to uproot their lives and quickly get from small town to small city. It is a process
The Major League Trade Deadline has come and gone, with a number of a big names changing addresses.
There were also 32 Minor League players dealt on July 31, players who will be forced to uproot their lives and quickly get from small town to small city. It is a process often overlooked, but one that Nick Solak already experienced earlier in the month.
A second baseman/outfielder, the Rangers' No. 13 prospect has been traded twice, first on Feb. 20, 2018 and again on July 13. Both moves caught Solak off-guard as he was moved from the Yankees, who took him in the second round of the 2016 Draft, to the Rays at the outset of Spring Training a year go, and then to Texas in a move that took him from Durham to Nashville.
"Yeah, it was definitely a surprise," he said. "Being the second time I've been traded, both times came as a real surprise. I think the first one caught me by surprise a little bit more, a couple days into Spring Training. Not too long after being drafted, a year and a half. I think the first time was more surprising, and then this time here at least it was in July towards the Trade Deadline, around that time. [But] when I woke up that morning, I didn't expect to be traded."
Solak said he was among the lucky Minor Leaguers who were informed of a trade while playing at home.
"It was actually really convenient," he said. "I was at home in Durham. I got the call around 11:45, noon from my manager, Brady Williams, that I'd been traded. Maybe the next hour, hour and a half, I'm on the phone pretty constantly, talking to the Rays' GM, the Rangers' GM and a bunch of people with the Rangers, the Nashville Sounds' trainer, the director of Minor League operations, to figure out first it's announcing you got traded and second it's where you're going and how you're going to get there. The first hour, it's on your phone."
Solak also said he benefited from the geographic proximity of Durham to Nashville and the fact that the Sounds also were winding down a homestand.
"Durham was at home, Nashville was at home through that weekend," he said. "After being on the phone, I drove over to the field, packed all my stuff up and then drove to my apartment, packed up my apartment. My family was in town that weekend, so we went out to dinner. In Nashville, we had a night game that night, so I got to the clubhouse around 2. I got to meet everybody. Pretty much kept my bag packed because we flew out to San Antonio [the next day]."
Solak summed it up as being a whirlwind -- "[I was] in three states in three days."
Both the International and Pacific Coast leagues have seen a sharp rise in runs and homers this year, so the move did not dramatically boost Solak's numbers. He hit .266/.353/.485 with 17 dingers in 85 games with the Bulls and is batting .290/.338/.629 with six homers in 17 games with the Sounds.
"I always want things to be a little better," Solak said. "I think it doesn't really matter at what point of the season, where I'm at, I'm always trying to be better. But I think it's just taking care of business every day, getting my work in, preparing to play in the game and having that confidence to play my game. There are a lot of things you can't control in this game, so I continue to remind myself of that. The numbers take care of themselves."
In briefWestbound I:
The Giants were buyers and sellers at the Trade Deadline, and the most notable prospect they acquired is suiting up for Sacramento. Shortstop Mauricio Dubón
, the organization's new No. 8 prospect
, hit .297/.333/.475 with 16 homers and 47 RBIs with San Antonio prior to the trade.Westbound II:Jesús Sánchez
had barely gotten his feet wet at Durham when he was traded by the Rays to the Marlins, who assigned him to New Orleans. Sanchez, Miami's No. 3 prospect
, has hit the ground running, going 6-for-13 with three homers in his first three PCL games.Year of the Bull:
As some prospects are dealt away, others are called up to replace them. Such was the case with Astros No. 6 prospectAbraham Toro
, as the outfielder was promoted to Round Rock after hitting .306/.393/.513 with 16 homers and 70 RBIs at Double-A Corpus Christi.
Chris Jackson is a contributor to MiLB.com.