At the end of the waiver trade deadline the Brewers surprised a lot of people, myself included, when they announced they had acquired Jonathan Broxton from the Reds for two players to be named later. The identity of those two players has finally been decided and revealed. The Brewers are sending right-handed pitchers Kevin Shackelford and Barrett Astin to Cincinnati.
Kevin Shackelford is the second member of the 2013 Brewers Arizona Fall League participants to be traded this year, the other being Mitchell Haniger in the Gerardo Parra deal. Shackelford was drafted in the 21st round of the 2010 draft and has spent his entire minor league career as a reliever. He split last year between A+ and AA before being sent to the AFL. He also split this year between A+ and AA. He's never had very good strike out numbers nor was his year to year BAA impressive. The fact that he's spent 5 years in the minors, as a reliever, and never reached AAA suggests the Brewers didn't think too highly of him. It's possible with more time he could be a major league reliever. Now that he's with a new organization he just might get that chance.
Barrett Astin was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2013 draft. He spent last year in rookie ball and this year in low A ball. He's spent time as a reliever and a starter to limited success, but it's far too early in his career to rule him out of any role at the major league level. If he does realize his full potential as a major league starter, it's likely it would be at the back end of a rotation.
This being an in-division trade one thing you worry about is a player hurting you in the future. Neither prospect was on MLB.com's Brewers Top 20 prospect list. One could even make the argument that Kevin Shackelford is more a non-prospect than anything at this point in his career. It's probably a good bet neither player will come back to haunt the Brewers.
In my opinion this constitutes a complete salary dump by the Reds. Jonathan Broxton is owed $9 million dollars next year with an option for 2016 so it's not a minor salary dump. Still, this has to be considered another win for GM Doug Melvin. He got a solid reliever for essentially nothing.
Draft information courtesy of Fangraphs