The Rangers have finally struck a deal as the non-waiver trade deadline approaches, shipping infielder Chris Davis and right-hander Tommy Hunter to Baltimore for right-handed set-up reliever Koji Uehara.
A source confirmed the deal, which also includes $2 million coming from the Orioles with Uehara, but said the final details probably won't be ironed out until later tonight. Davis said via text message that he has not been told about a deal.
The Star-Telegram reported earlier today that the Rangers and Orioles had discussed a deal for Uehara, a 36-year-old in his third year in the United States after a career in Japan. Baltimore wanted Davis, who could be the solution at first base next year if Derrek Lee isn't re-signed. Davis could be an immediate plug-in if Lee is dealt to Pittsburgh before 3 p.m. Sunday, when the trade deadline passes.
Uehara entered Saturday with a 1.09 ERA over his past 30 appearances. He also saved 13 games last year for the Orioles in a trial run as closer before they settled on Kelly Gregg in the off-season.
Davis has been seeking a trade because he believes his path to an everyday big-league job is now blocked by Mitch Moreland and Michael Young. He hit 24 homers in 48 games for Triple A Round Rock and has been recalled multiple times this season as an injury replacement. He's currently on the Rangers roster because Adrian Beltre is on the disabled list.
Hunter missed the first three months of the season with a right groin injury. He had made the Rangers' rotation out in spring training, only to be injured the same day that the Rangers decided he would be their fourth starter. He started three games last year in the postseason.
His injury freed up an opening for Alexi Ogando, who is 10-5 and was selected to the American League All-Star team. Hunter has worked exclusively in the bullpen, including tossing 2 1/3 scoreless innings Friday in relief of Ogando.
Some in the organization entered the trading frenzy believing the Rangers needed two relievers. As such, the Rangers remain actively engaged in talks with San Diego for closer Heath Bell. The Padres, though, have informed teams that they will take their time in evaluating all offers, and might not strike on a deal they like until just before the deadline.
-- Jeff Wilson