Omar Infante’s diving attempt at a ground ball with the bases loaded yesterday was unsuccessful and left the Marlins second baseman with a fractured right middle finger.
Infante initially remained in the game, but was eventually replaced by Wes Helms and is bound for the disabled list. However, manager Jack McKeon is hopeful that Infante “can come back in a short period of time.”
Infante’s double-play partner, Hanley Ramirez, is already day-to-day with a shoulder injury, so the Marlins are suddenly very thin in the middle infield. Emilio Bonifacio started at shortstop yesterday and Helms, who’d never played an inning at second base before this week, spent half the game there after replacing Infante.
Prior to the injury Infante was having a sub par season, hitting just .274 with three homers and a .674 OPS after three straight years with a mark above .750. The man he replaced at second base, Dan Uggla, has a .709 OPS for the Braves despite hitting below .200 until his recent hot streak.
The Rays have traded right-hander Jake Odorizzi to the Twins, per team announcements on Saturday evening. The Twins will receive minor league shortstop Jermaine Palacios in the deal. Despite previous speculation, recently-DFA’d outfielder Corey Dickerson was not included in the trade.
With Odorizzi, the Twins finally have the front-end starter they’ve been seeking all winter. It’s a bargain deal as well, as the 27-year-old righty is under contract through 2019 and didn’t require the club to part with any of their top-shelf prospects in the trade. Odorizzi will be looking to stage a comeback in 2018 after a dismal performance with the Rays last year, during which he eked out a career-worst 4.14 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 through 143 1/3 innings.
Palacios, 21, ranked no. 27 in the Twins’ system last season. He split his year between Single-A Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers, raking a combined .296/.333/.454 with 13 home runs and 20 stolen bases in 539 plate appearances. He’s expected to continue developing at shortstop, though he’s also seen limited time at second and third base during his four-year career in the minors.