6:36pm: Both teams have announced the trade. Tampa Bay receives cash in return.
6:15pm: Right-hander Colten Brewer, who had been in camp with the Rays on a minor league deal, will instead go to the Yankees and be added to their 40-man roster, per Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. He had recently been reassigned to minor league camp but Topkin reports he had an assignment bonus that allowed the Yanks to acquire him. Yankees manager Aaron Boone had previously indicated the club was working on a “potential deal” and it seems this is what he was referring to.
Brewer, 30, appeared in the big leagues from 2018 to 2021, with the Padres in the first of those years but then with the Red Sox for the next three. In 91 major league innings, he has a 5.04 ERA, 20.3% strikeout rate, 13.4% walk rate and 50.4% ground ball rate. He spent last year with the Royals on a minor league deal, tossing 39 2/3 innings at Triple-A with a 4.76 ERA, striking out 24.9% of opponents, walking 10.7% and getting the ball on the ground at a 51.9% clip.
As mentioned, Brewer was in camp with the Rays on a minor league deal. He tossed 9 1/3 innings over eight appearances this spring, not allowing any earned runs while striking out 15 hitters and walking three. Despite that strong performance, he didn’t crack Tampa’s roster, as he was reassigned to minor league camp yesterday.
While the Rays weren’t willing to afford him an immediate big league job, the Yankees will plug him into the bullpen. Brewer is out of minor league option years, so he’ll have to stick on the active roster or be offered to other teams once New York officially selects his contract. He has between two and three years of service and would be eligible for arbitration for the first time next winter if he holds his roster spot all year.
The Yankees have a full 40-man roster, so they’ll need to make a corresponding move once Brewer’s acquisition is final. New York has a number of players on the injured list — Ben Rortvedt, Lou Trivino and Tommy Kahnle among them — who could be moved to the 60-day injured list if the club anticipates a notable absence.