Marlins purchase AJ Puk from A for JJ Bleday


The Marlins acquired left-handed pitcher AJ Puk from the Oakland A’s in change for outfielder JJ Bleday, Miami introduced Saturday. Right here’s what it’s good to know:

  • Puk, 27, led the athletics bullpen with 76 strikeouts in 62 aid video games in 2022.
  • He was drafted No. 6 by Oakland in 2016 and performed in three main league seasons with the franchise.
  • Picked fourth total by the Marlins within the 2019 draft, Bleday hit 5 dwelling runs and 16 RBIs in 65 video games for Miami final season.

the athlete‘s prompt evaluation:

Analysis of Puk’s time in Oakland

Simply days earlier than spring coaching started, the A’s and Marlins traded disappointing high 10 draft picks, with the A’s sending Puk to Miami in change for Bleday. Each will attempt to restart their careers in new locations.

Left-handed Puk, a Florida alum, got here into professional ball as a possible top-of-the-rotation arm, however accidents have minimize brief his profession. After a robust 2017 minor league season, Puk injured his elbow throughout spring coaching in 2018 and underwent surgical procedure by Tommy John. He returned halfway by way of the 2019 season however struggled to regain the texture for his transfer and was moved to the bullpen from rotation. He made his main league debut that season, posting a 3.18 ERA in 11 1/3 aid innings.

In 2020, Puk was set to be in rivalry for a spot within the A rotation, however a shoulder damage put him out even earlier than the pandemic canceled spring coaching. He tried to return when baseball resumed later that summer season however ended up having to bear shoulder surgical procedure. In 2021, he primarily served relieved and by no means discovered his rhythm. He posted a 6.10 ERA in 48 2/3 triple-A innings and a 6.08 ERA in 13 1/3 huge league innings. He additionally missed time with a strained left bicep.

The 2022 season was by far his finest within the main leagues. He served in a aid function all season, posting a 3.12 ERA with 76 strikeouts in 66 1/3 innings. Based on Statcast, he was within the ninetieth percentile of fastball speeds in 2022, averaging 96.7 miles per hour with the court docket. Regardless of his success within the bullpen, the A’s introduced this offseason that Puk can be returning to the rotation this 12 months, which appeared like an odd match given Puk’s damage historical past and the truth that batsmen managed him pretty nicely even in a aid function, generally final season. His barrel proportion of 8.8 % was nicely above the MLB common of 6.7. — lockard

How Miami Puk Would possibly Evolve

It’s not clear if the Marlins plan to make use of Puk as a starter or helper. He joins a workforce that features former A’s left-hander Jesús Luzardo, who was one among Puk’s closest associates and a roommate throughout his time with the A’s. Miami has observe report of growing younger pitchers, and whereas Puk is just not that younger in age (27), he’s nonetheless comparatively younger from a developmental perspective contemplating he’s been absent by way of damage. — lockard

What the A’s get in Bleday

From the A’s perspective, they’re up in opposition to an outfielder in Bleday who has but to reside as much as the pre-draft hype he’s earned at Vanderbilt. The left-handed outfielder misplaced his first full professional season to the pandemic, posting a disappointing .695 OPS in Double A in 2021. The Marlins have been aggressive with Bleday regardless of his struggles in 2021, and pushed him to Triple A in 2022, the place he had a .228/.365/.470 line with 20 dwelling runs in 85 video games. He appeared in 65 video games for the Marlins final season however hit solely .167/.277/.309.

Bleday was identified for his skill to manage the strike zone at Vanderbilt, the place he hit .347/.465/.701 with 27 homers as a junior. He confirmed strike zone consciousness in his Arizona Fall League stint in 2021 when he ran 20 instances in 24 video games and had a .435 OBP. There are similarities in his abilities to a different former Vanderbilt outfielder whose profession took off after a transfer to the Bay Space, Giants outfielder Mike Yastrzemski.

Bleday has choices within the minor league so he’s not assured a spot within the A’s outfield on opening day. He can play all three outfield positions and figures to compete in opposition to Esteury Ruiz, Cristian Pache, Brent Rooker, Conner Capel and Cal Stevenson for a spot alongside Ramón Laureano and Seth Brown within the A’s outfield. — lockard

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(Picture: Invoice Streicher / USA In the present day)


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