Sunday, November 27, 2011

Jaso traded for reliever who was accused of rape

Former Biscuits catcher John Jaso has a new major league home. The Rays traded Jaso, who was with Montgomery in 2007-08, to the Seattle Mariners for relief pitcher Josh Lueke and a player to be named or cash considerations.

Jaso has been with Tampa Bay for parts of the last four seasons. The 28-year-old had a .224 average, five home runs and 27 RBIs in 89 games this year. In 2010, the first where he saw considerable playing time, Jaso hit .263 with 44 RBIs and 59 walks in 109 games.

Lueke, who turns 27 on Dec. 5, went to the Seattle organization last year as part of the trade that sent Cliff Lee to the Texas Rangers. Lueke finished with a 6.06 ERA in 25 major league appearances. He started the year with the Mariners before spending three months in Triple-A. Lueke had a 3.41 ERA in Seattle from July 18 through the end of the season.

Lueke, while part of the Texas system, pleaded no contest in 2009 to rape and sodomy charges in Bakersfield, Calif., stemming from a May 2008 incident while he was in Class A. (Details here.)

“Josh has the stuff to get hitters out in the American League East and began to show that during the second half of last season,” Rays general manager Andrew Friedman said in a release. “We believe he can be an important part of our success here for many years."

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