The Los Angeles Dodgers have acquired catcher Russell Martin from the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for a pair of minor leaguers, the Dodgers announced Friday.
FILE PHOTO: Aug 27, 2018; Baltimore, MD, USA; Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Russell Martin (55) double during the fifth inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports – 11140575
The Blue Jays are sending Martin and cash to the Dodgers for RHP Andrew Sopko and infielder Ronny Brito.
Canada’s Sportsnet estimated the Blue Jays will send the Dodgers $16 million to $18 million to defray the $20 million Martin is owed in 2019. He signed a five-year, $82 million deal with the Blue Jays in November 2014.
Martin, who turns 36 next month, appeared in 90 games with the Blue Jays last season. He hit .194 with 10 home runs and 25 RBIs.
In 13 seasons, he has a .249 career batting average with 185 home runs and 751 RBIs in 1,610 games. He has thrown out 31 percent of runners attempting to steal.
A four-time All-Star, Martin began his career with the Dodgers (2006-10), then played two years each with the New York Yankees and Pittsburgh Pirates before signing with the Blue Jays.
The Dodgers were in need of a second catcher to join Austin Barnes after Yasmani Grandal signed a free-agent contract with the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday.
Brito, who will turn 20 in March, ranked 23rd among Dodgers prospects, according to MLB Pipeline. In rookie ball last season, he hit .295 with 11 home runs and 55 RBIs.
Sopko, 24, divided last season between High-A and Double-A teams. He had a combined 6-5 record and a 3.52 ERA in 117 2/3 innings pitched. He struck out 121 batters and walked 27.
—Field Level Media