Royals trade Wil Myers, top prospects to Rays for James Shields

Matt Ryerson-US PRESSWIRE

The Kansas City Royals traded four prospects to the Tampa Bay Rays for James Shields, Wade Davis, and a player to be named later or cash.

The Royals and Rays pulled off a blockbuster deal on Sunday night, with Kansas City agreeing to send center fielder Wil Myers, RHP Jake Odorizzi, LHP Mike Montgomery and third baseman Patrick Leonard to Tampa Bay in exchange for RHP James Shields, RHP Wade Davis and a player to be named later (or cash).

Myers, the Minor League Player of the Year, headlines the prospect package heading to Florida. The 22-year-old outfielder had a breakout campaign in 2012, pounding Double-A pitching to the tune of .343/.414/.731 with 13 home runs in 152 plate appearances before a promotion to Triple-A, where he proceeded to hit .304/.378/.554 with 24 homers.

Odorizzi, who went to Kansas City via the first Zack Greinke trade, made his major-league debut last season, tossing 7⅓ innings and allowing four runs on eight hits and four walks. However, the 22-year-old sparkled in the minors, where he pitched 145⅓ innings between Double- and Triple-A with a 3.03 ERA. He also registered 135 strikeouts.

Montgomery also spent 2012 between Double- and Triple-A, though he did not find the same success as Myers and Odorizzi. The southpaw started 27 games between the two levels and was pounded for 179 hits in just 149⅔ innings.

Leonard, a 2011 fifth-round pick, made his professional debut in 2012, hitting .251/.340/.494 in 268 plate appearances for the Rookie League Burlington Royals.

Shields will front Kansas City's revamped rotation. The soon-to-be 31-year-old is signed through the 2014 season. During the 2012 campaign, "Big Game" James fired 227⅔ innings, recording 223 strikeouts and posting a 3.42 FIP.

Davis, who lost his rotation spot and was converted to a relief role, found an uptick in both his velocity and strikeouts in the bullpen in 2012. The 27-year-old righty threw 70⅓ innings and finished off 15 contests for the Rays, whiffing 87 batters en route to a 2.73 FIP.

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