Mercedes sent to Giants for minor-league pitcher O's get McGehee

recall OF Voigt

April 30, 1993|By Ken Murray | Ken Murray,Staff Writer

Luis Mercedes' brief residency in Baltimore ended last night when the Orioles traded the 25-year-old outfielder to the San Francisco Giants for minor-league pitching prospect Kevin McGehee.

McGehee, 24, will be sent to the Triple-A Rochester Red Wings, and outfielder Jack Voigt will be recalled to take Mercedes' place on the Orioles' roster.

Mercedes had been expecting a deal since the middle of spring train-ing.He had become the odd-man out in manager Johnny Oates' right-field rotation, despite hitting .292 in limited playing time.

He'll get a chance to play right away and often in San Francisco, which lost center fielder David Martinez to injury yesterday.

"You can see my face," Mercedes said after the announcement. "I'm real happy. I don't want to leave the Orioles, but this is a chance to play every day."

Mercedes was not going to get that chance in Baltimore. The successful transition of Mark McLemore from utility infielder to part-time right fielder made it easier for the Orioles to deal Mercedes.

General manager Roland Hemond said the club had kept an eye on McGehee, a right-hander, "for a long time."

"We've got more depth in the outfield now," Hemond said. "We lost some pitching over the winter, and we're trying to replenish the pitching."

In McGehee, the Orioles are getting a prospect who has struck out 415 batters in 428 minor-league innings in four years. He was 0-3 at Triple-A Phoenix this season with a 4.91 ERA. He had given up 28 hits and struck out 18 in 22 innings.

McGehee was an eighth-round draft choice of the Giants in June 1990. He has an overall minor-league record of 26-24 and a 3.11 ERA in 70 games, 68 of them starts. His best pitch is the slider.

Voigt hit .185 with one home run in 18 games in spring training for the Orioles this year. But he was on a batting tear with Rochester. He leads the International League with a .379 average with three homers and 11 RBI in 17 games.

"That's one of the reasons we can make the move," Oates said, "howwell [Voigt] has played down there. This gives us a chance to pick up a pitcher we can use down the road."

Mercedes was signed as an undrafted free agent in 1987 and won two minor- league batting titles in the Orioles' farm system. He started seven games this season and hit safely in all of them, although he did not drive in any runs.

"Person-wise, he has come so far," Oates said of Mercedes. "He's always had ability. His record speaks for itself. He hit .300 wherever he played.

"Rightfully or not, he's gotten a name [as a disruptive player] in his earlier years . . . . [But] He never gave me one second of problems in the two years I've been managing. That's a credit to Luis Mercedes, where he's directed his life. He's a pleasure to be around."

The Orioles announced the trade shortly after last night's 11-0 victory over the Minnesota Twins at Camden Yards. After learning of the deal in a closed door meeting in Oates' office, Mercedes went around the locker room shaking hands and exchanging hugs with his now former teammates.

"I'm going to miss all these guys here, he said. "They've been very nice tome. I hope they don't forget me.


NB Yr... .. .. .. Club.. .. .. W-L.. .. .. ERA.. ..IP.. .. .. SO

'90 .. .. .. .. Ever.. .. .. 4-8 .. .. ..4.76.. ..73 2/3 .. .. .86

'91 .. .. .. .. S.Jose .. .. 13-6 .. .. .2.33.. ..174.. .. ..171

'92 .. .. .. .. Shrev.. .. .. 9-7 .. .. .2.96 .. .158 1/3 .. .. 140

'93 .. .. .. .. Phoe.. .. .. 0-3.. .. ..4.91.. .. 22.. .. . 16

Tot... .. .. .. .. .. .. .. 26-24.. .. .3.11 .. ..428.. .. ..403

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