Hot on the heels of acquiring Jesus Aguilar, the Miami Marlins traded with the Baltimore Orioles for infielder Jonathan Villar.
The Marlins traded with the Orioles to make it happen, giving up 2019 14th-round choice LHP Easton Lucas in the balance. Lucas pitched to a 3.63 ERA with 41 K’s in 34 2/3 innings in the low minors.
Villar has played over 300 games at both second base and shortstop, but can also slide over to third if needed. Last season with the last-place Orioles, Villar led the majors by appearing in all 162 games while slashing .274/.339/.453 with 24 home runs, 73 RBI, and 40 stolen bases.
It’s not every day that you can pick up a legitimate 30-30 threat for a low-A prospect. Villar put up a 4.0 WAR season for the O’s last season. In 2016, he led the majors with 62 stolen bases and totaled a 3.9 WAR in his first season with the Milwaukee Brewers.
A six-foot-one, 215 lb. native of La Vega, DR, Villar was born on May 2nd, 1991. He was originally signed by the Philadelphia Phillies in 2008. Midway through the 2010 season, Philadelphia sent him with Anthony Gose and J.A. Happ to the Houston Astros for Roy Oswalt.
Villar eventually made his major league debut with the Astros in 2013, hitting .236/.300/.353 with 10 homers and 46 RBI in 198 contests. After the 2015 season, Houston sent him to the Brewers for Cy Sneed.
Villar played in 365 games over two-and-a-half years with Milwaukee, where he slashed .266/.334/.413 with 36 round-trippers, 125 RBI, and 99 stolen bases.
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The Marlins picking Villar up for Lucas amounts to a cash dump for Baltimore. Villar is currently signed to a one-year, $10.4 million deal, and could stand to cash in after the season to a good multi-year deal somewhere. The Marlins could also use Villar as another deadline deal to keep their minor-league cupboards full.
Earlier, the Marlins picked up Jesus Aguilar off waivers from the Tampa Bay Rays. To make room on the 40-man roster, the Marlins designated Tayron Guerrero for assignment and non-tendered shortstop J.T. Riddle.
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