DETROIT – The Detroit Tigers announced today they have acquired righthanded pitcher Grayson Long and a player to be named later or cash considerations from the Los Angeles Angels in exchange for outfielder Justin Upton.
Long, 23, is ranked as the eighth-best prospect in the Angels system by Baseball America and the ninth-best prospect in the organization according to MLB Pipeline. In 26 starts this season between Single A Inland Empire and Double A Mobile, the 6-5, 230 lbs. righthander has compiled an 8-8 record with a 2.69 ERA (133.2IP/40ER), 125 strikeouts, a 1.17 WHIP and a .232 opponents batting average. Long, who was named to the Southern League All-Star Team earlier this season, currently leads all Southern League pitchers with a 2.52 ERA (121.2IP/34ER), while he is fourth with a .226 opponents batting average and fifth with a 1.13 WHIP. He also ranks fourth among Southern League starting pitchers with 10.50 baserunners allowed per nine innings.
“Grayson has been a standout player this season in the Southern League, that features some of the best prospects in baseball,” said Al Avila, Tigers Executive Vice President and General Manager. “Grayson is a workhorse-type starter who throws strikes and has a great makeup. Our scouts project him to be a starter at the Major League level. As for Justin Upton, he has been a consummate professional in his time here, and the Tigers wish him and his family all the best moving forward.”
A third round draft pick by the Angels out of Texas A&M University in the 2015 MLB First-Year Player Draft, Long has posted a 13-13 record with a 3.05 ERA (218.1IP/74ER) and 217 strikeouts in 54 career minor league appearances, including 53 starts. Long was named to the Midwest League All-Star Team as a member of the Burlington Bees in 2016.
Upton, 30, has a .279 (128×459) batting average with a .904 OPS, 81 runs scored, 37 doubles, 28 home runs and 94 RBI over 125 games this season. Over two seasons with the Tigers, Upton has batted .260 (268×1029) with 162 runs scored, 65 doubles, 59 home runs and 181 RBI in 278 games.