MLB Trade Rumors: Isiah Kiner-Falefa has been traded by the Texas Rangers to the Minnesota Twins, according to Jeff Passan on Twitter. Catcher Mitch Garver is coming to Texas, and Ronny Henriquez is going with IKF to Minnesota.
This is a big surprise. It would not have been a big surprise a few weeks ago (other than, you know, the lockout was going on), but with Josh Jung having shoulder surgery that is expected to cost him most, if not all, of the 2022 season, IKF seemed like not just the best third base option for the Rangers, but the only real third base option.
With IKF gone, Andy Ibanez would seem to be the leader for the third base job internally, with Yonny Hernandez also hanging around. The Rangers like Davis Wendzel, and Justin Foscue has started getting reps at third base, but neither of them seem like guys who would get the job out of spring training. I’d expect the team to look for a stopgap there.
As for Garver, he’s a 31 year old righthanded hitting catcher who, like IKF, has two years of team control remaining. He slashed .256/.358/.517 last year as the Twins’ backup catcher, while also playing some first base and DH.
We will update as more info comes available.
UPDATE — Ronny Henriquez is reportedly going to Minnesota in this deal. Henriquez is one of the Rangers’ bevy of AA/AAA arms. He throws really hard, but is undersized and doesn’t have a ton of movement on his fastball. He’s seen as a starting prospect with a fair amount of relief risk, and is probably in the 15-30 range in the Rangers system.
The Rangers are dealing from prospect depth in giving up Henriquez as the sweetener in this deal, as they have a lot of arms of this type at this level. He was also added to the 40 man roster this offseason, so this would open up a 40 man spot.
UPDATE II — It’s official — IKF and Henriquez for Garver. The Rangers, presumably, have a new starting catcher.