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Angels trade Jordan Kipper for Damien Magnifico

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The Orioles and the Angels swapped minor league pitchers today

MLB: Fall Star Game Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

In what appears to be another baffling trade, Billy Eppler sent the Angels 2016 minor league pitcher of the year to the Orioles in exchange for a dude with 3 innings of MLB experience.

If the goal is to up the Angels name game, then acquiring Brooks Pounders and now Damien Magnifico seems to be helping with the fact that Eppler traded away Jett Bandy this past off season.

Jordan Kipper, who was the Angels org pitcher of the year in 2016 has yet to pitch above AA level but has steadily climbed in the org since being drafted in the 9th round of the 2014 draft. In AA last season, Kipper had a 3.35 ERA, a 1.23 WHIP, and 85 Ks with 153 IP. In his 5 games so far this year, Kipper has a 1.74 ERA, .194 BAA, and 0.94 WHIP.

Damien Magnifico threw mostly for AAA in 2016 to the tune of a 4.06 ERA, 1.45 WHIP, and 61Ks in 62 IP. He has a .389 BAA in 7.2 IP so far in 2017.

The biggest difference between the two is that Kipper is a starter and Magnifico is a reliever. Perhaps that was a big motivation for this trade and Eppler is continuing his hunt for major league ready bullpen help. Also helping - Magnifico throws hard and his fastball can touch 100 MPH. The catch? Magnifico also has had control issues.

We know know that Billy Eppler favors position players who make good contract and play solid defense. It’s also becoming clear that Eppler likes hard throwing pitchers - if if they come with control issues.

Was it a good trade? On the surface is doesn’t look great to me, but time will tell and perhaps they didn’t see much future in the big leagues for Kipper.