Not long before the 2018 deadline for waiver trades and moments before their 3-2 victory over the division-leading Diamondbacks, the Dodgers acquired third baseman David Freese from the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for minor league infielder Jesus Manuel Valdez.
The 35-year-old Freese has played in 93 games for Pittsburgh this season, hitting .282 with 29 runs, 10 doubles, one triple, nine home runs and 42 RBI along with a .780 OPS. The veteran infielder has put up very similar splits against both right-handed and left-handed pitchers, hitting .284 (31-for-109) against southpaws compared to a .281 (36-for-128) mark against righties. Defensively, he has appeared in 54 games at third base and 15 games at first base this year, posting a combined .977 fielding percentage.
He provides a legitimate secondary defensive option at the hot corner to Justin Turner, while also providing a potent righty bat off the bench.
The 10-year major league veteran was part of the St. Louis Cardinals’ 2011 World Series championship team where he earned the World Series MVP Award. The Corpus Christi, Texas native is a career .274/.347/.413 hitter with 182 doubles, 100 home runs and 497 RBI over 10 big leagues seasons with the Cardinals (2009-2013), Los Angeles Angels (2014-2015) and Pittsburgh Pirates (2016-2018). Freese was originally selected by the San Diego Padres in the ninth round of the 2006 First-Year Player Draft.
Valdez, 20, made his professional debut with the DSL Dodgers this season after signing with the organization in July of last year. In 60 games with the DSL Dodgers/Guerrero, he has hit .230 with 44 runs, 11 doubles, four triples, six home runs and 27 RBI, along with a .343 on-base percentage.
To create room on the 40-man roster, the Dodgers transferred right-handed relief pitcher Erik Goeddel to the 60-day disabled list, effectively ending his season.
Freese may join the team as early as Saturday.
(Lauren Douglas provided some information furnished in this report)