As expected, Juan Carlos Oviedo is having difficulty securing a visa in the Dominican Republic after the reliever formerly known as Leo Nunez was busted for falsifying his identity.
Marlins pitchers and catchers must report tomorrow, but Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald writes that Oviedo definitely won’t be there and “the Marlins aren’t sure when Oviedo will be given the green light.”
Marlins president David Samson said previously that the team is no longer counting on Oviedo being on the Opening Day roster, although that doesn’t necessarily mean he won’t be cleared for a visa and travel to the United States by then. It could mean he reports to spring training and MLB hands down a suspension that keeps him from pitching.
Oviedo avoided arbitration last month by agreeing to a one-year, $6 million contract, but much like Fausto Carmona/Roberto Hernandez Heredia in Cleveland the Marlins won’t have to pay anything if he can’t pitch for one reason or another.
Last night we wrote about the rumored deal between the Cardinals and the Athletics for Stephen Piscotty. The deal is now official, with Piscotty going to Oakland for minor leaguers Yairo Munoz and Max Schrock.
Something else emerged about the deal today: a big reason why St. Louis traded Piscotty to Oakland as opposed to another team was so that he could be near his mother, who was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease last May. Piscotty and his family are from Pleasanton, California, about 35 miles from Oakland.
Here’s Cardinals GM John Mozeliak:
This was certainly a baseball trade — Piscotty became expendable for the Cardinals after they acquired Marcell Ozuna yesterday — but it was one which could’ve been made with any team with a couple of red or white chip prospects. That Mozeliak considered Piscotty’s personal situation in making the deal with the A’s is a credit to him and his staff.
The 26-year-old Piscotty hit .235 with nine homers and 39 RBIs in 107 games last season. He has hit .268 with 38 homers and 163 RBIs in 2+ major league seasons. He agreed to a six-year, $33.5 million contract extension last spring.
As for the prospects in return: Munoz, 22, hit .300 with 13 homers and 68 RBIs this year for Double-A Midland and Triple-A Nashville. Schrock, 23, batted .321 with seven homers and 46 RBIs for Midland, and was a Texas League All-Star.