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Reliever Badenhop acquired from Marlins



UPDATE, 1:03 AM: Executive VP Andrew Friedman said Badenhop "is someone we feel like fits well in front of our defense. He is very effective on righthanded hitters. He does a very good job of keeping the ball on the ground and, more importantly, in the park. We feel like he gives us a slightly different look than some of our other guys.''

UPDATE, 8:23: Badenhop said he wasn't sure what to think when he saw Marlins VP Larry Beinfest had called, though he assumed he wasn't being dumped for financial reasons given the team's recent spree to add Heath Bell, Jose Reyes and Mark Buehrle: "We knew they couldn't cry poor anymore after the last couple weeks.

Badenhop said he was a bit surprised by the move - as was his wife, Sara, who was out for a run and walked back into their Charlotte, N.C., home to the news - since he figured he had "a fairly decent" shot to stay with the Marlins and the rumblings he had heard were about some other teams but not the Rays.

"It was kind of different,'' he said. "If I would have been traded to a National League team obviously I would have known more (about them). But being traded to an AL East team and a team coming off a wild-card and a team that's really successful is different. It took a little bit of getting used to.''

Badenhop said he had already talked with Rays executive VP Andrew Friedman, and liked what he heard. "Andrew said with the way they run their defense and defensive positioning and stuff, that he thinks it's going to work wonders for a guy like myself,'' Badenhop said. "I'm basically trying to put the ball on the ground and let my defense do some work.''

BREAKING: The Rays added another potential piece to their bullpen, acquiring RHP Burke Badenhop from the Marlins for minor-league C Jake Jefferies.

Badenhop, 28, spent parts of the last four seasons in the majors, compiling a 13-15, 4.34 record. He worked in 53 games in 2010 and 50 last season.

 Badenhop is something of a ground-ball specialist, with a 58.5% ground ball rate that was 10th highest among all pitchers with at least 60 innings.

He is arbitration eligible after making $750,000 last season (and the Rays do plan to tender him), and has one option remaining so he could be sent to Durham if he doesn't make the opening day bullpen.

Jefferies, 24, was a third-round pick in the 2008 draft but didn't develop, playing only six games above the Class A level in four minor-league seasons. He hit .238 with two homers and 32 RBIs in 2011, mostly at Class A Charlotte.



[Last modified: Wednesday, January 11, 2012 12:41am]


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