Travis Snider #45 of the Toronto Blue Jays gets caught in a run down by Jemile Weeks #19 of the Oakland Athletics during MLB game action at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Brad White/Getty Images)
On the eve of the July 31 non-waivers trading deadline, the Pittsburgh Pirates have added Blue Jays outfielder Travis Snider in their push for a winning season and (even better) a postseason berth. To get Snider, the Pirates are sending right-handed pitcher Brad Lincoln to the Jays.
Snider was the Blue Jays' first-round draft pick in 2006, and has gotten extended trials with the big club. But he's not done much with those trials, entered this season with a .248/.307/.423 line in 232 major-league games, and has spent most of 2012 in Class AAA. But he's still only 24, and absolutely murdered the baseball while playing with Las Vegas this season. The Jays finally summoned him back to the big club a couple of weeks ago, and in nine games he's struck out 13 times but hit three home runs.
Lincoln's also a 2006 first-round draft pick, going 10 spots ahead of Snider at No. 4 overall. He's spent most of his professional career struggling with injuries, and entered this season with a 5.74 ERA in just 100 career major-league innings. But he's pitched exceptionally well this season, largely in relief, with 60 strikeouts, only 19 walks, and a 2.73 ERA in 59⅓ innings. Lincoln's been much better as a reliever than as a starter this season, but the Blue Jays are desperate for starting pitchers and might at least consider trying him in that role again.