Jabari Blash, once known only as a power-hitting outfield prospect in the Padres farm system, has had a whirlwind of an off-season. In December, he was part of the San Diego/New York trade that saw Chase Headley (and pitcher Bryan Mitchell) go to the Padres, meanwhile the Yankees got Blash. At the time, some Yankees fans were getting quite excited at the thought of acquiring another big, beefy home run hitter to go alongside Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge in the outfield.
When I say “big, beefy”, I’m talking about a dude who is 6’5 and weighs in around 235 lbs, who also projected to be a formidable, dinger-hitting presence at the plate; but those Yankees fans probably got a bit ahead of themselves, since Blash is a Yankee no more. With a three-team trade being pulled off yesterday between the Rays, Yankees and Diamondbacks, the Yankees needed to make some room for their new infielder, Brandon Drury, and to do so, they DFA’d Big Daddy Blash (that nickname reminds me of someone..., perhaps a former Halo?).
While the New York front office was preparing to send Blash walking, a former Yankees front office member by the name of Billy Eppler was thinking “Hey, send him my way!” as tonight the team announced that the Angels have acquired Jabari Blash via trade for the esteemed PTBNL or cash considerations.
Today the #Angels have acquired OF Jabari Blash from the New York Yankees in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations. In a corresponding move, RHP Alex Meyer has been transferred to the 60-day disabled list.— Angels (@Angels) February 22, 2018
Blash is 28 years old, and while he’s yet to really make the impact that many a scout had foretold for him, there’s still some stuff there to like. There’s that big, athletic frame with pop to spare, sure, and while he’s not really been able to have success at the plate thus far (he hit .213 in 61 games last year for the Padres), he has shown that he can accrue some respectable OBP (.333 in the aforementioned 61 games of the ‘17 season).
So obviously there’s something there that Billy Eppler is down with, and OF depth is never a bad thing, as evidenced by the other recent OF pick-up of Chris Young. Camp is just about to get underway, and there is going to be some competition, it seems, for that 4th outfielder gig; competition is healthy and good during spring training, right?
Also, in a little housekeeping news, you’ll notice that the team’s press release tweet mentions that they’ve moved Alex Meeyer to the 60-day DL. So if you’ve had Alex Meyer on the brain, then there’s your Alex Meyer update.
C’mon, 2018 season, let’s get this party started already!