Yankees send Sonny Gray to Reds

Sonny Gray has a new home in Cincinnati.

With the luxury tax threshold set at $206 million for 2019 - a $9 million increase from a year ago, plus Gray's unburdened salary, the Yanks have put themselves in a strong position to acquire talent come midseason. First reported a few days prior, the deal stalled momentarily due to what exact pieces would be involved, along with the Reds wanting to sign Gray to an extension.

"Sonny Gray is receiving the change of scenery he coveted, shipped to the Reds on Monday afternoon as part of a three-way trade that resulted in the Yankees' acquisition of outfield prospect Josh Stowers from the Mariners".

The Cincinnati Reds' build-up continues, and the latest is the addition of pitcher Sonny Gray. While most fans initially wouldn't see this as a good pick up, the Reds hope that Gray can return to prominence in this revitalized 2019 season for the team.

Last week Gray avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one year, $7.5 million contract with the Yankees. "To maximize his abilities, it would be more likely best [for him to be] somewhere else".

The last prospect dealt was Reiver Sanmartin, a big left-hander who went from NY to Cincinnati. While pundits feel that they may be in for tough games against the NL Central favorites, the only thing certain at this point is improving on their performance last season.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman had said throughout the offseason he meant to trade Gray, but Cashman waited until CC Sabathia was cleared to resume working out following a procedure last month to insert a stent to clear a blockage in an artery to his heart.

Away from the Bronx, though, Gray was still an effective pitcher as he went 7-5 with a 3.17 ERA with just three round-trippers allowed in 12 starts. However, Gray is still just 29 and pitched like a genuine ace early in his career while in Oakland.

While Gray comes in as a troubled pitcher to a hitter-friendly ballpark, he joins a young staff looking to make some waves. Another plus is that newly acquired pitching coach Derek Johnson was his college coach at Vanderbilt, and is comfortable with Gray. He may be a good fit for the Reds, though, as Cincinnati is hopeful to turn in something better than 2018's 67-95 season. However, given his potential, the move is worth the risk for a small-market, rebuilding team like the Reds.

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