On Monday evening, the Detroit Tigers got busy, opting to solve their outfield issue with a trade. General Manager (GM) Al Avila acquired outfielder Austin Meadows from the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for prospect infielder Isaac Paredes and a 2022 Competitive Balance Round B selection.
The Detroit Tigers fleeced the Rays in this deal. It may be early to start making this kind of assumption, but the first takes make it seem like the Tigers walked away with a significant addition to their outfield without sacrificing much in return.
Meadows is just 26 years old, so he’s still on the right side of 30 and has experience underneath his belt. He’s been in the big leagues for the last four seasons and will look to bring some experience to the Tigers outfield while still being on the younger side.
It aids the core of a younger team that the Tigers are building. Meadows is still arbitration-eligible, which leaves him under team control until 2025, which makes him an even more attractive addition to the Tigers roster.
Detroit Tigers acquired outfielder Austin Meadows in a trade with the Rays.
Meadows is coming off of a 2021 season where he played in 142 games, totaling 591 at-bats for the team. He slashed .234/.315/.458 on the season with 27 home runs and 106 RBI. The 2021 season was a tremendous bounce-back season for Meadows, who struggled immensely in 2020, slashing just .205/.296/.371 over 152 at-bats.
He has been a tad inconsistent during his time with the Rays, but when he is firing on all cylinders, he is a power-hitting outfield who swings from the left side. He’s another lefty bat to add to the lineup and will ultimately bring significant benefit to the Tigers’ outfield.
After Riley Greene’s very unfortunate foot injury, Victor Reyes and Derek Hill were the next best options. Choosing to go out and get Meadows-provided insurance until Greene is healthy and ready to make his debut but also adds a great piece to build around moving forward.
Giving up on Isaac Paredes was going to be more than likely as time continued on. He was never really able to get things going, and crowded positions made it tough to see him getting many looks. Using him as trade bait ultimately worked out well for the Tigers, and they were able to net a former all-star in the process.
The initial reaction to this trade seems to be that the Tigers were able to fleece the Rays and walk away with the best side of the deal and walk away with a player who has the most upside (not including the draft pick/future player). It was a great deal by the Tigers organization and Al Avila.