Dodgers trade Frankie Montas and more for Rich Hill, Josh Reddick
When the Dodgers landed Rich Hill and Josh Reddick from the Oakland Athletics on August 1, 2016, the team was in the midst of the playoff push. The team trailed the San Francisco Giants by two games in the National League West and the rotation was beset by injuries, making the acquisition of a starting pitcher almost essential.
On the surface, the trade looked like a winner for the Dodgers. Hill was 9-3 with a 2.25 ERA, a 2.54 WHIP, and a 10.7 K/9 over his 14 starts for the A’s. Likewise, Reddick had been a solid performer over five seasons in Oakland, slashing .257/.321/.440 and averaging nearly 17 home runs and 60 RBI.
Hill was an immediate contributor to the Dodgers, going 3-2 down the stretch and adding a 1.83 ERA, a 2.07 FIP, and a 10.2 K/9. He would spend three-plus seasons in Dodger blue, compiling a 27-14 mark over 63 appearances (62 starts) and working to a 3.30 ERA, a 3.89 FIP, and a 10.7 K/9.
Reddick, on the other hand, never got off the ground. Brought in to fill the hole left by an injured Andre Ethier, the right-fielder played in 47 games for the Dodgers. However, his contributions were minimal, with Reddick slashing a measly .258/.307/.335 and adding only eight extra-base hits and nine RBI in 155 at-bats for Los Angeles.
The cost to acquire Hill and Reddick was a trio of right-handed prospects; Frankie Montas, Jharel Cotton, and Grant Holmes.
At the time, Holmes was the more heavily regarded prospect, but after missing nearly all of 2018, he slid a bit. However, he’s managed to put some of that status back on after a solid season split between Double and Triple-A in 2019, where Holmes worked to a 3.23 ERA over 23 appearances (17 starts) and an 8.4 K/9 mark.
Jharel Cotton would make his MLB debut in 2016, and looked like a potential steal for the A’s, going 2-0 with a 2.15 ERA and a 7.1 K/9 over 5 late-season starts. However, after a rough 2017 season and the dreaded Tommy John surgery costing him the 2018 season, Cotton found himself on the waiver wire this winter.
The true gem here may have been Frankie Montas. Only a Dodgers for one season, Montas was included in the Hill/Reddick trade to protect other arms like Julio Urias and Jose De Leon. After a rough go in the bullpen in 2017, Montas forced his way into the Oakland rotation in 2018, going 5-4 with a 3.88 ERA, a 3.90 FIP, and a 6.0 K/9 ratio over 13 appearances (11 starts). He would build on that in 2019, with a 9-2 mark, a 2.63 ERA, a 3.00 FIP, and a career-best 9.7 K/9 ratio. A PED suspension cost Montas most of the season, and some legitimacy as to the results he put up.
However, if Montas can put the suspension behind him and show that he can continue to progress without any ill-gotten aids, the 27-year-old may be one arm that the Dodgers will regret letting go.