Oct 2, 2014; Anaheim, CA, USA; Los Angeles Angels relief pitcher Kevin Jepsen (40) pitches during the tenth inning against the Kansas City Royals in game one of the 2014 American League divisional series at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
12/16/14: Tampa Bay Rays trade Matt Joyce to Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim for RHP Kevin Jepsen
We keep talking about the Rays needing to trade DeJesus. If Joyce was still on their team, they would have two lefty-hitting outfielders to trade. You can argue that Joyce is slightly better than DeJesus, but what does that matter if the Rays would still need to deal him?
Jepsen, meanwhile, bolsters the Rays’ bullpen with McGee hurt, and even if McGee was healthy, he is a reliever worth having. He is coming off a spectacular 2014 for the Angels, and he has the stuff to maintain such results.
Considering that Joyce really wouldn’t have a place on the Rays if he stayed, this trade clearly improves the Rays’ 2015. We can say the same about 2016, when Jepsen will still be under team control. The Rays also save a projected $2.6 million for 2015.