The Milwaukee Brewers and KC Royals have agreed to trade right-handed reliever Taylor Clarke to Milwaukee in exchange for minor leaguers Ryan Brady and Cam Devanney. The move opens a spot on the 40-man roster, allowing free agent acquisition Seth Lugo to officially join the roster. FanSided's Robert Murray first reported the trade. Later, MLB Network insider Mark Feinsand confirmed the trade's specifics.
The 30-year-old Clarke pitched 59 innings for the Royals last season, recording a gaudy 5.95 ERA and -.2 fWAR. This came after a very solid 2022 campaign, where Clarke was the best Royals reliever, not named Scott Barlow. He had a 4.04 ERA and 1.18 WHIP across 49 innings, making a great first impression on the Royals fanbase. However, a hot-and-cold 2023 had his clock in Kauffman ticking, and this trade marked the end of his tenure.
Taylor Clarke's time with the KC Royals has come to a quiet end.
Neither Brady nor Devanney are on Kansas City's 40-man roster, nor have they joined the team's top-30 prospect list. The fact that Kansas City found a trade partner for Clarke is remarkable enough.
Brady, a former BYU right-handed pitcher, joined the Brewers as an undrafted free agent in 2022. He has a strong track record in pro baseball, posting a sub-3.00 ERA in both High-A and Double-A. He recorded a composite 2.67 earned run average in 81 innings in 2023. He will be 25 before the next Opening Day. Although he was not ranked among the Brewers' top prospects, he brings another intriguing relief arm to the Royals' system.
Devanney is a former 15th-round pick in the 2019 MLB Draft. Royals fans may be tired of contact-first batters who can play multiple positions, but Devanney is exactly that. He made at least eight appearances at each infield position at the Triple-A level last season. He mostly plays shortstop, but his large workloads at third and second base are hard to ignore. He had 11 home runs last season, with a 107 wRC+ and .823 OPS to boot. Devanney is not knocking on the MLB door, but he provides decent organizational depth in Kansas City.
The trade is the latest move in a busy offseason for Kansas City. Fans needed to see this high transactional pace after a quiet Winter Meetings in Nashville. Hopefully, this is not the final move from general manager J.J. Picollo and the Royals front office, as rumors continue to swirl around the team.