Former Royal James Shields returns to the AL Central, traded to the White Sox

San Diego Padres starting pitcher James Shields looks to the scoreboard as he walks to the clubhouse after he was pulled in the third inning of a baseball game against the Seattle Mariners, Tuesday, May 31, 2016, in Seattle. Shields gave up 10 runs, all of them earned, from eight hits. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres have traded pitcher James Shields and cash to the Chicago White Sox for pitcher Erik Johnson and shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr.

The deal was made Saturday. It came three days after Padres executive chairman Ron Fowler criticized the team’s recent performances as being “embarrassing” and “pathetic,” and called out Shields for his poor start Tuesday at Seattle.

Shields was one of several big-name players the Padres brought in before the 2015 season, giving him a $75 million, four-year deal. The roster overhaul fizzled, as the Padres finished three games worse last year than they did in 2014.

The 34-year-old righty is 2-7 with a 4.28 ERA. He allowed 10 runs in 2 2-3 innings in a 16-4 loss at Seattle on Tuesday.

Tatis is the son of former big leaguer Fernando Tatis.

Shields leaves the last-place Padres for the White Sox, who got off to a fast start and have slid back in the AL Central.

The White Sox have been looking to boost their rotation and hope “Big Game James” can deliver. Shields has been among the most durable pitchers in the majors in recent years, making at least 31 starts every season beginning in 2007.

Prone to giving up home run balls, Shields has kept his teams in games for years, going a combined 129-104 with a 3.76 ERA overall for Tampa Bay, Kansas City and the Padres.

Shields helped pitch the Rays into the 2008 World Series and the Royals into the 2014 Series. He made the AL All-Star team in 2011.

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