Diamondbacks News

Diamondbacks trade for another third baseman

New Diamondbacks INF Yonny Hernandez
New Diamondbacks INF Yonny Hernandez / Sarah Stier/GettyImages
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While this isn't the player many Diamondbacks were expecting to hear when the team trades for a third baseman, it's not a bad move by any means. With Rojas out for seemingly a long time, the Dbacks have traded for additional depth in terms of third basemen. On April 7th, the Dbacks traded for Yonny Hernandez from the Texas Rangers in exchange for MILB OF Jeferson Espinal. After the trade, the Dbacks designated Humberto Mejia for assignment.

I foresee Hernandez providing depth as he has been assigned to Triple-AAA and will be recalled if Drew Ellis is unable to hit at all. Same for Sergio Alcantara. There's fear that they will be unable to perform at the plate and the Dbacks are getting insurance for that. Yonny is able to play third, shortstop, and 2nd so he's a versatile infielder.

Only 24, he made his MLB debut last year with the Rangers and hit 217/.315/.252 in 166 trips to the plate. In Triple-AAA, he hit .250/.424/.323 in 261 plate appearances. He's known for having a great eye at the plate with often more walks than K's. For his professional career, he walks over 15% of his at-bats. Yonny has plus speed after stealing 34 bags in the minors and majors last year. Plus, he has all three options left which gives the team a ton of maneuvering room when it comes to making changes to the roster. Since he's still a rookie, he will be on the team for at least 6 more years unless they trade or release him.

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Don't think that the team isn't still wanting a long-term solution at third. From what I have seen, the Dbacks seem to not want to sell their best prospects for a short-term solution. I appreciate that since our prospects are what will determine the future of the team. However, the hunt for a third baseman continues.

As for Espinal, he's a 19-year old OF that hit .259/.340/.357 between Rookie ball and Low-A last season. He's got tremendous speed, but I'm unsure if he will ever hit for a decent average. He is years away from contending for a roster spot.

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Mejia is a 25-year old pitcher that the Dbacks acquired in the Starling Marte trade in 2020. He has pitched 32 1/3 innings in the bigs but has a 6.68 ERA during that time. He also had 9 walks and 20 K's. There's some reason for optimism since he had a 4.88 xFIP, but that's still not that good. The team will have 7 days to trade, release, or outright Mejia to Triple-AAA unless a team claims him off waivers.

Oliver Perez has made the Dbacks roster in what should be his final MLB year before he retires. To make room on the 40-man roster, Caleb Barager was designated for assignment after a rough spring training, his first with the team after being claimed off waivers from the Giants. The lefty has solid baseline stats when it comes to ERA, but he struggles with control and limiting baserunners.

Chris Devenski and Keone Kela are rehabbing injuries which is why they were sent down and Jake Hager lost out on a roster spot to Sergio Alcantara.

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