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Rays Trade Erasmo Ramirez to Seattle for Steve Cishek

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SEATTLE, WA - JUNE 22: Reliever Steve Cishek (Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JUNE 22: Reliever Steve Cishek (Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images) /
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When the going gets tough, the tough get going and the Tampa Bay Rays are on the move again adding and taking away from the bullpen with their trade of Erasmo Ramirez to Seattle for Steve Cishek.

The rumors mill was up and about early on Friday morning as MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand via Twitter and Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune first reported that the Rays and Mariners were working on a trade that would send Erasmo Ramirez to Seattle for right-handed reliever Steve Cishek.

About an hour later, the rumors were no longer, as the Rays indeed traded Ramirez ($3.125 million) to the Mariners for Cishek. Along with Cishek comes $1 million to help offset the remaining monies of Cishek’s $6 million.

Cishek unlike Ramirez is free agent bound following the season, so in all likelihood is a “rental” while Ramirez is under team control via arbitration for two more years. Ramirez, who started his career with the Mariners before his trade to the Rays in 2015 has been used primarily out of the bullpen, though he is expected to return to the rotation for the Mariners.

This season, Ramirez appeared in 26 games, which included eight starts going 4-3 with a 4.80 ERA. In his three seasons with the Rays, Ramirez went 22-20 with a 3.98 ERA. Career wise, Ramirez is 29-32 with a 4.23 ERA, which includes 71 starts in 171 games over six seasons between the Mariners and Rays.

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Drafted in the fifth round of the 2007 Draft by the Florida Marlins, Cishek spent the first six years of his career with the Marlins, making his MLB debut in 2010. He would become the Marlins closer going 17-20 with 2.86 ERA, saving 94 games, with 312 strikeouts, 106 walks in 289.2 innings over 284 appearances.

Prior to the 2015 trade deadline, the Marlins would trade Cishek to the St. Louis Cardinals for Kyle Barraclough. He would appear in 27 games, going 0-0  with one save, a 2.31 ERA and logging 23.1 innings. Cishek would enter free agency at season’s end and would sign with the Mariners in December 2015.

In 2016 with the Mariners, Cishek would record 25 saves (seven BS) in 62 games, going 4-6 with a 2.81 ERA in 64 innings before a trip to the DL at the end of the season..

He underwent surgery in October for a torn labarum and began the season on the 10-day DL before joining the Mariners on May 15 and has since made 23 appearances (20 innings) posting a 1-1 record with a 3.15 ERA in the set-up role. In his career over eight MLB seasons, Cishek is 22-27 with 121 saves and a 2.83 ERA in 396 appearances.

In other Rays news, the team announced that they had optioned Andrew Kittredge back to Triple-A Durham, to make room for tonight’s starter Austin Pruitt and added Lucas Duda who replaces Ramirez on the roster.

Next: Rays Must Be Buyers and Sellers by Monday's Trade Deadline

Another roster move will be needed for Cishek, once he arrives from Seattle which will be either Saturday or Sunday. For those of you fans that are into numbers, Duda will wear No. 21, while Cishek gets No. 33.

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