After weeks of speculation, the Arizona Diamondbacks have finally dealt the man who has become the face of the franchise, as the team has traded first baseman Paul Goldschmidt to the St. Louis Cardinals.
Goldschmidt was dealt to St. Louis in exchange for pitcher Luke Weaver, infielder Andrew Young, catcher Carson Kelly and a 2019 Competitive Balance Round B draft pick.
"Certainly a bittersweet decision on our part," D-backs general manager Mike Hazen said Wednesday. "I don't think I could overestimate the impact that Paul has had on this franchise, in the clubhouse, and in this organization and the community.
"There are decisions you want to do and there are decisions you feel like you have to do. I think this fell into the category of the latter just in terms of us moving forward."
Hazen said he and manager Torey Lovullo broke the news to Goldschmidt at Lovullo's home Wednesday.
"He was very professional and respectful, and I think probably disappointed, as much as he loves Arizona and as much as he's given to this organization and this community," Hazen said.
"My general message (to fans) is we still have a lot of really good players on this roster... We feel like Torey and his staff are going to have the team ready to go on Opening Day."
Goldschmidt was selected by the Diamondbacks in the eighth round of the 2009 MLB Draft. He is a three-time Gold Glove Award and four-time Silver Slugger Award winner, and he has been selected to six straight All-Star Games. He has twice been the runner-up for the National League MVP award.
Goldschmidt is a career .297 hitter with 209 home runs and 710 RBIs. He hit 290 with 33 home runs and 83 RBIs in 158 games last season.
Goldschmidt leaves Arizona as the D-backs' all-time leader in numerous categories, including on-base percentage, slugging percentage and walks. He is No. 2 in team history behind Luis Gonzalez in hits, home runs, doubles, RBIs and runs scored.
The 31-year-old Goldschmidt was set to make $14.5 million next season before becoming a free agent heading into the 2020 season.
Weaver is 15-17 with a 4.79 ERA in 52 appearances for the Cardinals in the last three seasons.
Young is a minor-league prospect who finished fifth in the 2018 Arizona Fall League with a .936 OPS and was a midseason All-Star at Single-A Advanced Palm Beach in 2018.
Kelly was ranked by Baseball America as the second-best defensive catcher in the minors in 2018.