Boston Red Sox chief baseball officer Craig Breslow made his first trade on Friday evening, sending middle infielder Luis Urias to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for relief pitching prospect Isaiah Campbell.
Urias was the Red Sox' lone addition at the trade deadline last July. Boston acquired him from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for minor league pitching prospect Bradley Blalock.
Upon acquiring Urias, the Red Sox assigned him to Triple-A Worcester. However, within a matter of days, the club promoted him to the majors. He would proceed to play 32 games with Boston, posting a .225/.361/.337 slash line. He added a 12.8 percent walk rate and 23.9 percent strikeout rate.
Urias only hit two home runs with the Red Sox, but they were quite memorable. Both were grand slams and came in consecutive games (one versus the Nationals and the other versus the Yankees). With the feat, Urias became the first Red Sox player since 1940 to hit a grand slam in back-to-back games.
The timing of Friday's trade with Seattle is not a coincidence. Boston had to decide whether to tender or non-tender Urias by 7 p.m. Eastern, and the growing expectation was that he would be non-tendered. By trading him to Seattle, the Red Sox receive a promising bullpen arm while the Mariners get a potential everyday contributor for the 2024 season. Urias is projected to earn $4.7 million in arbitration, according to MLB Trade Rumors.
Campbell, the reliever heading back to Boston, is a 26-year-old whom Seattle selected with their 76th overall pick back in 2019. He went straight from Double-A to the majors last season, posting an impressive 3.32 FIP and 10.36 K/9 through 28.2 innings at the big-league level. On a somewhat more concerning note, he issued 4.08 BB/9.
The Red Sox and new pitching coach Andrew Bailey will presumably work with Campbell to reduce his walk rate in hopes that he can make the Opening Day roster and provide Boston with a reliable bullpen arm down the stretch.