|The Marlins began their annual offseason purge at the Winter Meetings, trading closer Matt Lindstrom to the Astros for a pair of nondescript minor leaguers and a player to be named, who turned into third baseman Jorge Jimenez following the Rule 5 draft. Picking eighth in the draft, Houston selected Jimenez from Boston’s Triple-A roster and sent him to Florida to complete the deal. The Marlins first received low Class A righthander Robert Bono and Rookie-ball shortstop Luis Bryan.
Lindstrom, who spent time on the disabled list last season with an elbow strain, pitches in the mid- to high-90s and has touches triple digits with some regularity.
Last offseason, the Marlins unloaded Kevin Gregg, Mike Jacobs, Scott Olsen and Josh Willingham—arbitration-eligible all—in a flurry of activity aimed at reducing payroll. Following the ’07 season, they parted with Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis, sending both to the Tigers.
|Robert Bono, rhp
Born: Dec. 12, 1988 in Waterford, Conn.
Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 175. Bats: R. Throws: R.
School: Waterford (Conn.) HS.
Career Transactions: Selected by Astros in 11th round of 2007 draft; signed June 18, 2007.
The Marlins dug deep into an Astros farm system lacking in depth to acquire Bono and Bryan, as neither would have ranked among the Astros’ top 30 prospects. Bono’s best selling points are that he doesn’t walk many hitters and keeps the ball on the ground. He doesn’t miss many bats with a fringy fastball and a fringy breaking ball, so it remains to be seen whether he can sustain his success at higher levels.
|Luis Bryan, ss
Age: 19. Position: SS (30 G).
Born: Nov. 26, 1990 in San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic.
Ht.: 6-2. Wt.: 165. Bats: R. Throws: R.
Career Transactions: Signed as nondrafted free agent by Astros, Nov. 20, 2007.
Bryan had a solid year in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League, where he showed a solid ability to center the ball with moderate pop. However, he’s also a free swinger who has miles to go with his plate discipline after failing to draw a walk in 31 GCL games.
|Jorge Jimenez, 3b
Age: 25. Position: 3B (126 G), 1B (5 G).
Born: Sept. 12, 1984 in Santurce, Puerto Rico.
Ht.: 6-1. Wt.: 210. Bats: L. Throws: R.
School: Porterville (Calif.) JC.
Career Transactions: Selected by Red Sox in 15th round of 2006 draft; signed June 8, 2006 … Selected by Astros from Red Sox in Rule 5 major league draft, Dec. 10, 2009.
A physical third baseman, Jimenez offers a solid lefty bat and fringe defensive skills at third base. He has incredible arm strength, boasting at least a 70 arm on the 20-to-80 scouting scale. Jimenez’s power and range are bit short of the third base ideal, but he can hit for average and throw enough for the position.
|Matt Lindstrom, rhp
Age: 29. Remaining Commitment: 3 arbitration-eligible years remain prior to free agency ($410,000 in ’09).
Contract details courtesy of Cot’s Baseball Contracts.