Travis Jankowski is on the move.
The speedy outfielder was dealt to the Cincinnati Reds from the San Diego Padres on Thursday, Oct. 31 — less than a day after the end of the 2019 World Series — in exchange for international slot money. The trade ends Jankowski’s five-season tenure with the Padres as the 28-year-old heads to Cincinnati with three years of team control left.
Jankowski was a dominant force offensively in college, graduating as Stony Brook’s all-time leader in stolen bases and garnering national attention as he led the Seawolves to their first College World Series appearance in 2012. The underdog run capped off a junior season in which Jankowski slashed .415/.475/.620 with five home runs and 36 stolen bases. He became Stony Brook’s highest-ever draft pick when the Padres selected him in the first round of the 2012 MLB Draft.
After being hyped as a speed-first prospect, Jankowski made his MLB debut on Aug. 21, 2015, with his reputation bolstered by a 71-steal season with the Class-A Advanced Lake Elsinore Storm. He appeared in a career-high 131 games in 2016, making 82 starts and finishing eighth in the National League with 30 steals while primarily playing center field.
In 2017, Jankowski was the Padres’ Opening Day left fielder, but played only 27 games due to a hairline fracture in his left foot. He rebounded in 2018, stealing 24 bases in 117 games but battled injuries again in 2019 after fracturing his wrist in Spring Training and appearing in only 25 games.
Jankowski joins a Reds outfield currently populated by homegrown players such as Nick Senzel, Aristides Aquino and Jesse Winker in starting roles, while Phillip Ervin, Scott Schebler, Jose Siri and Josh VanMeter are also on the 40-man roster.