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Blue Jays exchange Russell Martin with the Dodgers



5:48 pm: The Angels will take $ 3.6 million of Martin's salary, and the Jays will pay the other $ 16.4 million of what they still owe, according to Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.ca (Twitter link).

1:30 in the afternoon: The Azulejos have formally announced the exchange. They will send Martin and cash to Los Angeles in exchange for the minor league shortstop. Ronny Brito and minor league law Andrew Sopko.

1:12 pm: The Dodgers have reached an agreement on an exchange with the Blue Jays that will bring the veteran receiver Russell Martin Back in Los Angeles, reports Arash Madani of Sportsnet (through Twitter). Martin will win $ 20MM in 2019, the last season of a five-year contract and $ 82MM with the Jays. Presumably, Toronto is paying a considerable part of that remaining salary as part of the exchange.

Russell Martin | David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The addition of Martin should not strictly eliminate the Dodgers from the race for the Marlins' star J.T. Realmuto, although there is certainly less urgency for Los Angeles to comply with the high sale price of Miami with this current agreement. However, it is not inconceivable that baseball operations president Andrew Friedman can make a solid offer for Realmuto even with Martin and Austin Barnes in the list A Barnes has a minor league option left and is able to play in the infield, and some reports indicate that Miami wants a receiver with Major League experience as part of a Realmuto agreement (in addition to the major prospects); Barnes could fit that description, speaking speculatively.

Soon, at 36, Martin will bring a good eye to the plate and strong defensive skills for the Dodgers, who, of course, recruited and developed the four-time All-Star. While the .194 / .338 / .325 batting line of last season obviously looks ugly, Martin walked at a rate of almost 16 percent, one of the highest rates in the league, and showed that It has a bit of pop, certainly enough to make Him comparable to other receivers throughout the game. Martin hit 10 homers and registered an .133 ISO (slugging percentage minus batting average), the latter of which registered just a little south of the average receiver's mark in the league (.141 ISO).

Martin hit the ball on the ground (51.2 percent) and emerged (19.4 percent of his fly-balls were pop-ups) with maximum career rates in 2018, making the average of .234 per game. that he published last season may not be as casual as it seems at first glance. But, if he can correct any of those problems in a return to Chavez Ravine, it will give the Dodgers a high quality defender with excellent base skills. Martin's robbery figures have declined recently (22 percent in 2018), but he remains a top-quality pitching pitcher and was among the best in baseball to block pitches on the ground, according to the Baseball Brochure metrics. .

Martin's trade to Los Angeles will open the door to Jays' capture prospects Danny Jansen to listen as a long-term piece behind the plate. Jansen, 23, has been rated one of the organization's top prospects and enjoyed a solid debut at the end of 2018 with a .247 / .347 / .432 run and three homers in 95 plate appearances. Jansen will join at 27 years of age. Luke Maile, a strong defensive endorsement that had the best career record of .248 / .333 / .366 in 231 plate appearances last season.

Brito, on March 20, signed with the Dodgers a $ 2MM bonus as a 16 year old fan and has not yet moved beyond the rookie dance. He divided the 2018 season between the Dominican Summer League (eight games) and the Pioneer League (53 games), publishing a combined batting line of .295 / .359 / .496 with 11 homers and 14 doubles in 262 appearances on the plate . It's quite far from the relevance of the big leagues, but it enjoyed a solid production against the oldest competition in the Pioneer League last season.

Sopko is a 24-year-old player selected by the Dodgers in the seventh round of the 2015 draft. He opened the 2018 season in Advanced Class A and climbed to Double A in the middle of the season. Between those two levels, Sopko achieved a 3.52 ERA with 9.3 K / 9 against 2.1 BB / 9 and 1.1 HR / 9. As a right-handed flyball player with a low 90 heater that depends on control, his realistic ceiling is more on the line of a back-end starter, but its success in Double-A means that it should not be very far from getting a look at the MLB level.


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