The Kansas City Royals announced on Tuesday that the club had acquired outfielder Peter O’Brien from the Arizona Diamondbacks in exchange for pitcher Sam Lewis. The Royals trade for O’Brien comes roughly a month after they picked up Jorge Soler from the Cubs in exchange for closer Wade Davis.
Royals have acquired OF Peter O’Brien from Arizona for minor-league pitcher Sam Lewis. O’Brien appeared in 28 games for Arizona in 2016.
— Rustin Dodd (@rustindodd) January 3, 2017
Peter O’Brien Dealt to Kansas City Royals
Lewis split the past season between Rookie Ball in Idaho Falls, Single-A Lexington, and High-A Wilmington. The 25 year-old right-hander posted a cumulative 1.62 ERA with a 39/7 K/BB ratio in 44 1/3 innings over three starts and 17 relief appearances. Lewis doesn’t appear to be anything more than an organizational player, or at best, a reliever.
O’Brien will be added to the Royals roster after being DFA’d by the Diamondbacks last month. The 26 year-old began his professional career as a catcher but was shifted to third base, then to corner outfield and first base. He appeared in 28 major league games last season but spent the majority of his career in Triple-A. He hit .254/.295/.505 with 24 home runs and 75 RBI in 406 at-bats.
The former second-round pick is expected to compete for a spot on the Opening Day roster, but will most likely end up beginning 2017 at the Triple-A level. The Royals get a strong lottery ticket in O’Brien, who was ranked seventh among Diamondbacks’ prospects at the time of the DFA.
While the defense and strikeouts are a cause for concern, the power is absolutely there. The outfielder has 25-plus home run potential. Kansas City is a great landing spot for the youngster since the Royals watched designated hitter Kendrys Morales leave for Toronto earlier this off-season.