Rays, Mets Complete Wilmer Font Trade

The Rays have acquired right-hander Neraldo Catalina from the Mets as the player to be named later in last week’s trade that sent righty Wilmer Font from Tampa Bay to New York.

Catalina, 18, has yet to pitch in a professional game and hasn’t even been in the Mets organization for one calendar year. He was signed out of the Dominican Republic last July 2 and received a $150K signing bonus at the time, as Baseball America’s Ben Badler recently noted in reviewing the team’s 2018-19 international free-agent class. Badler notes that Catalina is already a massive 6’6″ and 205 pounds with a fastball that reaches 95 mph and a power slider. Obviously, he’s years away from being any kind of factor in the Majors, but he seemingly makes a nice lottery-ticket arm to add to the minor league ranks in Tampa.

Font, 28, has made just one appearance for the Mets since the time of the trade. He tossed four innings in a spot start and allowed a pair of runs on three hits with no walks allowed and one strikeout. He had a tough start to the season with the Rays — nine runs on 15 hits and five walks in 14 innings — but he’s a fairly hard-throwing righty who has seen a substantial uptick in swinging-strike and strikeout rate so far in 2019. Font is out of minor league options, so he’ll have to stick on the Mets’ roster moving forward or else be passed through waivers before he can be sent to the minor leagues.

from MLB Trade Rumors http://bit.ly/2HjL7V5

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