Mike Adams has pitched absurdly well in a setup role for the Padres this season (and last season, and the two prior seasons), so it has not been a surprise to see his name attached to trade rumors in recent weeks. Adams didn't seem like the easiest acquisition, however, because he's an inexpensive dominant reliever, under team control through 2012.
Thus, the Texas Rangers were forced to pay a steep price in prospects when they added Adams in a deadline deal on Sunday. Texas gives up a pair of well-regarded minor league pitchers, LHP Robbie Erlin and RHP Joe Wieland. Erlin, 20, has delivered a 3.34 ERA across two levels this season, with 123 Ks and just 12 walks (!) over 121.1 innings. Wieland, 21, actually tossed a no-hitter in his most recent start, and his ratios have been even better than Erlin's: 1.80 ERA, 132 Ks, 15 BBs (!) over 129.2 innings. For fantasy purposes, you always like to see promising pitchers head to San Diego's system, because it gives them a path to PETCO.
Over the past two days, the Rangers have now managed to add one of the N.L.'s premier setup men and one of the A.L.'s best (Koji Uehara) to a bullpen that already featured closer Neftali Feliz. Adams entered the day with a 1.12 ERA and a 0.73 WHIP, while Uehara was at 1.72 and 0.70. Both are under Texas' control through next season, too. If that team can just get five quality innings from a starter, it should be game-over. Adams and Uehara are both closing options, obviously, should the Rangers revisit the Feliz-to-rotation discussion in 2012.
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