LOS ANGELES — The Dodgers have found a way to address their inner depth, and it involves a familiar face.
Los Angeles has acquired shortstop Miguel Rojas from the Marlins in exchange for Minor League infielder Jacob Amaya, the club announced Wednesday.
Rojas, who turns 34 on Feb. 24, enters the final season of a two-year, $10 million extension, with $5 million owed to him in 2023. In Rojas, the Dodgers get a defensive shortstop elite player who is a two-time Gold Glove runner-up — including last season, when he ranked in the 98th percentile of above-average outs, according to Statcast — as well as a respected clubhouse leader.
Beyond that, they reunite with someone who secured his place in Dodgers history as a rookie in 2014. During the seventh inning of Clayton Kershaw’s no-hitter bid on June 18, 2014, Rojas made a great call and threw to third base to keep the effort intact and let the ace finish the job.
It was that glove work that Rojas was best known for during his eight years with the Marlins, having been traded there with Dee Strange-Gordon and Dan Haren for Austin Barnes, Chris Hatcher, Andrew Heaney and Kiké Hernández in December 2014. Although he was Miami’s primary shortstop for much of that time, he also saw time at the other three positions on the field.
Offensively, Rojas has pared .265/.318/.366 during his time with the Marlins, with 2022 seeing him post career lows in nearly every offensive category. He spent most of the second half of the season playing with a right wrist injury, but eventually had his right wrist debrided to remove the cartilage in October.
After the Dodgers missed big-name free agent shortstops on the market this offseason, it looked like Gavin Lux would get the majority of reps there in 2023. That may still be the case, but at all less Rojas gives them some flexibility. Additionally, Rojas also hits right-handed, while Lux hits left-handed.
Amaya, who is considered a more shortstop defender with impressive plate discipline, is expected to make his Major League debut in the 2023 season. He was selected by the Dodgers in the 11th round of the 2017 draft. Amaya was on the Dodgers’ 40-man roster, so no extra moves are needed for Rojas.