Pittsburgh Pirates, Tampa Bay Rays Swing Trade For Veteran Reliever

The Tampa Bay Rays have a knack for turning unremarkable relievers into lock-down, high-leverage arms; their next project is hard-throwing 30-year-old right-hander Robert Stephenson, acquired in a trade from the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Stephenson, a former first-round pick way back in 2011, has a fastball that can hit triple-digits, along with some crazy off-speed stuff. He is struggling this season to a 5.14 ERA and 1.43 WHIP in 18 outings. But everyone knows that the Rays will get the best out of him.

In return, the Pirates get a young shortstop to add some depth to the system. Former first-round pick (37th overall, 2020) Alika Williams is hitting .237 with five home runs and 23 RBI's at Double-A. He's thought to be a good prospect, but the Rays have a backlog of middle infielders in the system and could afford to deal him.

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