Mariners Make Shocking Trade, Sending Their Closer to Astros

Intradivisional trades are rare at the MLB trade deadline. Particularly when the two divisional rivals are smack in the middle of a key series against each other. But that's just what's taken place today, as the Seattle Mariners, just one game back of a playoff spot, have traded their closer, Kendall Graveman, to the Houston Astros, in a 4-player swap.

Also going to Houston is another bullpen piece from the Mariners, Rafael Montero, and in return, Seattle receives third baseman Abraham Toro and reliever Joe Smith. 

The move is a bit confusing, as the Mariners have appeared to be all-in "buyers" as they trail the 2nd Wild Card spot by just one game. Reports surfaced earlier today that they are in trade talks centered around acquiring either of two All-Star infielders. So trading away their closer at this point has left some scratching their heads. 

Jon Morosi reports, however, that the Mariners are still looking to improve the squad, and are still involved in more trade talks.

Should be an interesting next few days in Seattle. Especially tonight, when Graveman and Montero have to report to the visitors' clubhouse at T-Mobile Park.

Photo Credit: Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports