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Royals, Cubs Agree to Wade Davis and Jorge Soler Swap



According to Jon Heyman, an insider of MLB Network,  the Cubs and Royals have officially agreed to a deal that would send Wade Davis to the Cubs and Jorge Soler to the Royals.

Wade Davis will be closing games for the Cubs in 2017, pushing Hector Rondon further back in the bullpen. Davis in 2016, put up his worst ERA (1.87) and WHIP (1.13) since 2013, but those numbers show that even at his worst is still incredibly good. He has only given up 3 home runs over the past 3 years while maintaining a 1.18 ERA and converting 47/54 save chances. He will only cost the Cubs $10 Million in 2016, while the three top closers on the free agent market look to be getting at least 15 million AAV. Wade Davis still has some risks, he missed time in 2016 with a strained flexor in his forearm. He was healthy enough to log 9.7 innings in September. Davis also posted his worst first pitch strike percentage in 2016 at 52.8 percent, while in 2015 and 2014 he averaged a first-pitch strike on 61 percent of batters he faced. Overall,  Wade Davis is an elite closer and the Cubs were able to give away a player in an already crowded position.

Soler, the 24-year-old still has four-year of team control on his contract and has an all-star ceiling. The problem with Soler since he has come up from the minors is he is often injured and strikes out 27.6% of at bats which is an alarming rate. He grades out negatively on *DEF via Fangraphs in both 2015 and 2016. In the second half of 2016, Soler put together a solid campaign with a .258 ISO, a .366 wOBA and, a wRC+ of 129, all of which are above average. If Soler can continue his second half production with the Royals, and reach his potential then it would be a solid addition to the club for a year of Wade Davis.

*DEF- combination of two important factors of defensive performance: value relative to positional average (fielding runs) and positional value relative to other positions (positional adjustment).

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