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Angels finalize Alex Cobb trade, send Jahmai Jones to Orioles

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Jones made his major league debut with the Angels in 2020

Los Angeles Angels Summer Workouts Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

The Angels on Tuesday officially announced their trade with the Orioles, acquiring starting pitcher Alex Cobb and cash in exchange for infielder Jahmai Jones. Baltimore is sending a reported $10 to the Angels, two-thirds of his $15 million salary for 2021.

Jones made his major league debut last season for the Angels, getting three hits in seven at-bats and scoring twice in his three games, which included two starts at second base. The 23-year-old, drafted by the Angels in the second round in 2015, was rated the eighth-best prospect in the organization by Baseball America.

“He’s at his best when he takes a level, direct swing and struggled when he tried to implement a launch-angle swing at the Angels’ request. With his swing back in order, Jones hit seven homers at the alternate site and did a better job of hitting with two strikes and driving the ball the other way,” said Jones’ BA scouting report. “He makes enough contact to project as an average hitter and has enough thump to approach double-digit home runs.”

Jones was an outfielder before switching in 2018 to second base, where he has made 96 percent of his starts since.

Cobb had a 4.30 ERA and 4.87 FIP in 10 starts for Baltimore in 2020, with 38 strikeouts and 18 walks in 52⅓ innings. He’s in the final year of a four-year contract, joining Dylan Bundy, Andrew Heaney, and Jose Quintana as Angels starting pitchers who will be free agents after the 2021 season.

Among the 81 major league pitchers with at least 50 innings last year, Cobb ranked 72nd in strikeout rate (16.8 percent) and 67th in FIP (4.87), in addition to having the worst rate of balls hit with an exit velocity of at least 95 mph (48.8 percent), and the second-highest average exit velocity allowed (91.3 mph).

Including Jones in the trade for Cobb keeps the Angels’ 40-man roster at 38 players.