Twins Acquire Ildemaro Vargas
Image courtesy of Mark J. Rebilas, USA TodayVargas was with the Diamondbacks on four occasions in 2019. The 29-year-old hit .269 with nine doubles, a triple and six home runs in 92 games.
He was off to a slow start this season and after hitting just .150 over 20 at bats, the Diamondbacks Designated him for Assignment.
Vargas has spent parts of the past four seasons with the Diamondbacks and in 126 games, he has hit .257/. 287/.387 (.674) with 10 doubles and seven homers.
In his career, Vargas has played all four infield positions as well as left field, though the majority of time has been spent at second base and third base.
Rocco Baldelli said before Tuesday's game "He's a guy we really like in a lot of different ways organizationally. A guy that we think can do a lot of different things. Versatility. Plays around the infield. Can help you pretty much anywhere. Good contact bat, probably a line drive type bat regardless of who he is facing. Can probably get the barrel on the all. All reports, some of them coming from Escy (Eduardo Escobar) over there, say he's a really good guy too, a guy who will fit in very well in the clubhouse. You add all that up, looks like an interesting guy that can complement our group and compete in a lot of different ways."
Vargas grew up in Venezuela. He originally signed with the St. Louis Cardinals, but after six seasons, he became a free agent. He played briefly for Bridgeport in the Atlantic League to start the 2015 season, but the Diamondbacks signed him by May. He debuted in late June of 2017.
Baldelli didn't yet know Vargas's travel plans but likely he will meet the team in Minneapolis. Nothing has been finalized yet.
It will also be interesting to see how the COVID protocols play out. Things have certainly changed. "A lot of our discussions go beyond the baseball part of it. Most of what we used to talk about, you acquire a player, you are just talking about the player, what he can do, how he is as a guy, all kinds of different things. Now we're talking about testing protocols, when the last time that he went through it, how we're going to approach it, where we're going to fly him in to, how that flight's going to work, talking with Vargas about how to approach that commercial flight. That's what we end up spending our time on."
Baldelli said that the Twins are likely to go beyond the MLB protocol which may mean some rapid testing, maybe some daily testing, for a little while.
In addition, the Twins announced that Willians Astudillo has been removed from the Injured List and optioned to the team's alternate site in St. Paul.
Baldelli noted, "He's doing very well physically. It's been 18-plus days since he's been off (the COVID list) and moving around. He's in great shape." He added, "Not much is going to change as far as what he's doing, he's doing very well. Knowing that he's an option for us always, at any given point, is a very good feeling. You never know when those moves are going to be needed. They could come at any time."
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