Trade season is in full effect, folks. While everyone has been waiting around to find out where Willson Contreras and Ian Happ will be traded, I do not believe anyone in their right mind thought the Cubs would trade their best reliever who also has five more years of club control (hear our reaction live as this trade unfolded while we recorded our podcast, The Rant Live, this morning). And yet, here we are.
As first reported by Jack Curry of YES and subsequently confirmed by multiple other outlets, including the teams themselves, the Cubs have traded Scott Effross to the Yankees. Take a minute to let that settle in.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) August 1, 2022
In return, the Cubs will receive righty Hayden Wesneski, who is currently playing at Triple-A for the Yankees. The 195th overall pick in 2019, the 24-year-old is ranked No. 7 in the system by MLB.com and as high as No. 4 by Baseball America
Wesneski has put up solid, if unspectacular, numbers across parts of three seasons and he’s been able to generate a lot of grounders while keeping the ball in the yard. He’s made 19 starts so far this year and could even see some time at Wrigley once subsequent moves are made.
The righty is capable of touching 98 with his fastball and has a sweeping slider that pairs nicely with a sinker that moves the opposite direction. Wesneski can also firm up the slider to make it more of a cutter and he’s got a changeup that looks like a work in progress.
Good luck moving forward! pic.twitter.com/2uo3kFsOYA
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) August 1, 2022
This looks like a good return for the Cubs on paper, but it seems odd that they’d move on from a pitcher who has been so valuable to them and still has five years of control.
“It is super, super sad to see someone like Scotty go,” Cubs assistant pitching coach Daniel Moskos, who was Wesneski’s pitching coach at Double-A in 2021, told Jordan Bastian. “I love Scotty, I wish all my pitchers could be like Scotty. But the fact that we’re getting Hayden in return, I am genuinely excited, not just because I know him, but because I know the caliber of pitcher that we’re getting in return.
“It makes it feel worth it.”
Wesneski is already ranked No. 8 in the Cubs system by MLB.com, just behind Caleb Kilian and Jordan Wicks.