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Acquired LHP Chris Lee from the Astros in exchange for international bonus slots no. 46 and 76. [5/18]

Ninety percent of what you need to know: This is his first mention on BP. A fourth-round pick out of Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville, Florida in 2011, Lee has shown the ability to miss bats over his minor-league career (7.5 K/9 over 250 innings) but has also struggled to find the strike zone (4.4 BB/9) over four seasons. His breaking ball will flash above-average with a low-90s fastball, with a mediocre change mixed in at times. The Orioles will try him as a starter, but more likely he ends up as either a swing man or organizational fodder. —Christopher Crawford

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Acquired international bonus slots no. 46 and 76 from the Orioles in exchange for LHP Chris Lee. [5/18]

In return for Lee the Astros acquire two international slots worth a combined $655,800, which they will likely need if they are to avoid paying a penalty for the deals sources say they've already arranged. Houston is in the mix to sign several seven-figure players this July, including Gilberto Celestino, a player many consider one of the top outfielders in the international class. Since the Orioles are likely to be nonfactors in the international market—again—it makes sense to take a flier on an arm like Lee. Meanwhile, the Astros have the depth to make a move like this, freeing up some room to move and continue their already strong efforts overseas. —Christopher Crawford

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Acquired C-R Welington Castillo from the Cubs in exchange for RHP Yoervis Medina. [5/19]

The rare trade where both parties have reason to be disappointed.

Seattle's sadness stems from the circumstances surrounding Castillo's acquisition—namely Mike Zunino's failure to progress as a hitter through nearly 800 plate appearances—rather than the acquisition itself. Zunino continues to employ an overly aggressive approach, leading to whiffs and poor contact. The result is a career .238 True Average and 6.44 strikeout-to-walk ratio; for reference, former Mariner and all-creation hacker Miguel Olivo's career marks in those categories are .240 and 6.71. Sure, Zunino is playing in an era where more strikeouts are expected, but still.

Those numbers don't mean Zunino is a lost cause at age 24, nor that he's the new Jesus Montero; he's neither, thanks to his quality work behind the plate. What those numbers do mean is Zunino's playing time has outgrown his production. This season he's started 32 of the Mariners' first 38 games, and he's at 79 percent dating back through 2014. The Mariners haven't been as dependent upon Zunino as, say, the Royals have been with Salvador Perez, but Zunino's poor performance thus far demanded Jack Zduriencik find a better backup plan than Jesus Sucre.

Castillo is that much. There are numerous flaws to his game—he wouldn't be available at this time for this cost otherwise—but over the last two seasons he's been a league-average hitter with a steadily improving defensive profile. Zunino advocates will point to the edge he possesses over Castillo in framing (about 12 runs per 700 chances in 2014) as reason for the incumbent to remain the everyday starter, yet the math isn't that simple—even if you accept those numbers as accurate and fair representations of both players' true-talent levels.

For one, Castillo's bat was worth about nine runs more than Zunino's was, which all but eliminates the gap between the two. For another, who says Castillo has to start to add value? There are definite auxiliary benefits to rostering another competent backstop. In addition to allowing Lloyd McClendon to rest Zunino more often, Castillo gifts McClendon more flexibility late in games. Before, when Sucre was the primary reserve, McClendon would have to burn three players to pinch-hit or run for Zunino: Zunino himself, the substitute, and then Sucre; now, McClendon can cut out the middle man.

Whatever the value of those effects, the cost—a wild, perhaps declining middle reliever—makes this a smart, worthwhile trade for the Mariners, albeit not one they wanted to make. —R.J. Anderson

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Acquired RHP Yoervis Medina from the Mariners in exchange for C-R Welington Castillo; optioned Medina to Triple-A Iowa; designated LHP Phil Coke for assignment. [5/19]

While the Mariners figure to be disheartened by their motivation to make the trade, the Cubs are likely annoyed with the return on Castillo. Jed Hoyer held onto Castillo for nearly two months at the inconvenience of his 25-man roster, purportedly to regain the leverage he lost during the winter, when he acquired two catchers. Perhaps Hoyer did regain that lost leverage, but it sure doesn't feel like it.

Medina is a power-armed reliever experiencing a mid-career crisis. His delivery is high on effort, causing his head to jerk and his command to waver; no problem so long as his stuff is missing bats and generating groundballs, but therein is the rub: his velocity and groundball percentage have dipped. In May 2013, he averaged 96 mph; last May he was still at 96; so far this May, he's at 93 mph. Further complicating matters is Medina's groundball percentage which, in an admittedly small sample, is at 34 percent, well off his 55- and 56-percent rates from 2013 and 2014.

Losing a tick or a percentage here or there is part of aging, and in theory Medina should have enough left in the tank to get the job done. Yet his season-to-date not only lends itself to concern about his arm's health, but reveals how quickly a pitcher of this ilk can transition from useful to marginal. In a few months' time, Medina could become Chris Bosio's latest success story—or he could be off the 40-man roster. It's tough to know what's more likely, and that's why the Cubs have a right to be bummed. —R.J. Anderson

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