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Angels Acquire Lucas Giolito in Four-Player Trade with White Sox

The Los Angeles Angels acquired right-handed starter Lucas Giolito from the Chicago White Sox as L.A. also received reliever Reynaldo Lopez in the deal, the team announced. In exchange, the White Sox get a pair of prospects in catcher Edgar Quero and left-hander Ky Bush. 

The major trade comes mere hours after it was reported that the Angels will not be trading two-way superstar Shohei Ohtani leading up to the Aug. 1 trade deadline. 

CBS Sports had recently ranked Giolito as the second-best player likely to move this deadline. Here’s what we wrote at the time:

Giolito, another impending free agent, has rebounded from a subpar campaign behind a couple of noticeable alterations to his game. Foremost, he’s throwing nearly a half mile per hour faster than he did last season. He’s also using his slider more than his changeup for the first time in his career. Giolito’s basic formula remains largely the same otherwise: lots of elevated fastballs (and backspin changeups) followed by sliders down and away. As an added bonus, he ranks in the top 15 in the majors in both games started and innings pitched since the beginning of the 2021 season, making him a workhorse in this day and age. 

Giolito, 29, has compiled a 3.79 ERA (116 ERA+) and a 3.12 strikeout-to-walk ratio in his first 21 starts this season. The White Sox originally acquired him in December 2016 from the Washington Nationals as part of a larger trade that sent outfielder Adam Eaton to D.C. in exchange for a package that included fellow right-handed pitchers Dane Dunning and the above-mentioned López.

Giolito made just one All-Star Game during his time with the White Sox. Nevertheless, he received Cy Young Award consideration on three occasions, including recently in 2021, when he finished in 11th place. Giolito slots into an Angels rotation that has struggled this season even as the team is above .500 and within range of the final AL wild-card spot. As for López, out of the bullpen this season, he’s pitched to a 4.29 ERA and 2.36 K/BB ratio in 43 appearances for Chicago. Like Giolito, he’s eligible for free agency this coming offseason. 

On the White Sox side of things, the 23-year-old lefty Bush was ranked by CBS Sports as the Angels’ No. 3 prospect coming into this season. Here’s the write-up: 

Bush, Los Angeles’ second-round pick in 2021, posted a 3.67 ERA and a 3.48 strikeout-to-walk ratio last season in 21 Double-A starts. He’s a physical southpaw, listed at 6-foot-6 and 240 pounds, whose above-average fastball-slider combination has intrigued scouts since his collegiate days. Bush will need to improve his consistency with the rest of his arsenal and with his command. If he can, he could reach the majors as soon as summer 2023.

Bush has struggled this season in eight starts, but he was hampered by several injuries earlier in the year. 

The 20-year-old Quero out of Cuba was ranked as a top-100 overall prospect by Baseball Prospectus coming into the season and participated in the recent Futures Game. This season, he’s performed solidly with the bat despite being much younger than his peers at the Double-A level, and he’s made strides with his defense. 

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