Cleveland (MLB.com) - The Cardinals have improved their rotation, the Padres have boosted their batting order and the Indians have pulled in another prospect.
The three teams pulled off a swap mere hours before Saturday's 4 p.m. ET non-waiver Trade Deadline, as right-hander Jake Westbrook and cash was sent from the Indians to the Cardinals, outfielder Ryan Ludwick was dealt from the Cards to the Padres and Double-A right-hander Corey Kluber was sent from the Padres to the Tribe. Minor League lefty Nick Greenwood was shipped from the Padres to the Cardinals.
Westbrook had been scheduled to make the Indians' 1:07 p.m. start against the Blue Jays on Saturday, so the deal gained momentum in the late morning. Westbrook was officially scratched less than an hour before first pitch, with rookie right-hander Josh Tomlin taking his place.
The 32-year-old Westbrook is 6-7 with a 4.65 ERA in 21 starts this season. He made his return from 2008 Tommy John surgery on Opening Day this year. The right-hander is 69-71 with a 4.34 ERA in 221 career appearances, including 181 starts. All but three of his career appearances have been with the Indians, who acquired him from the Yankees in 2000.
Ludwick, 31, has revived his career as a member of the Cardinals since signing with the organization as a Minor League free agent in 2007. He was an All-Star in '08 and in four seasons with St. Louis hit .280 with a .349 on-base percentage and a .507 slugging percentage.
In 2010, Ludwick has a .281/.343/.484 line with 11 home runs, 43 RBIs and 44 runs scored in 77 games. He missed nearly a month with a strained left calf, returning last weekend for the Cards' series against the Cubs.
Rookie Jon Jay has impressed the Cards in his first 48 games and will see more time with Ludwick, a third-year arbitration-eligible player this winter, out of the picture.
The Indians did not appear motivated to deal Westbrook earlier this week, but the Cardinals, who long had an interest in Westbrook, were persistent. The Padres helped make the deal happen by shipping Kluber to the Tribe.
Kluber, 24, has spent the entire 2010 season at Double-A San Antonio, where he was 6-6 with a 3.45 ERA. He has struck out 136 and walked 40 in 122 2/3 innings in 22 games, including 21 starts. He leads the Texas League in strikeouts.
The Padres took Kluber in the fourth round of the 2007 First-Year Player Draft.