MIAMI — The perennially thrifty Miami Marlins opened their purse strings Monday and added some speed and power to an offense that ranked last in the National League in runs and homers this year.
Miami acquired infielder Jonathan Villar from the Baltimore Orioles for minor league left-hander Easton Lucas. The Marlins also claimed first baseman Jesus Aguilar off waivers after he was designated for assignment last week by the Tampa Bay Rays.
A switch-hitter, Villar turned in a career year for Baltimore last season, hitting .274 with career highs in hits (176), home runs (24) and RBIs (73) in 162 games. He ranked third in stolen bases in the American League, with 40.
“He was a tremendously exciting player for us, a joy to have,” general manager Mike Elias said Monday. “It was hard to let him go, but we’ve got to keep an eye on our strategic objectives, which is prioritize the future right now.”
Villar was too expensive to keep around. He is eligible for arbitration and likely to earn about $10 million next year, so Elias opted to trade the 28-year-old as part of a more substantial teardown.
“It makes a lot of sense, and it’s something you have to do,” Elias said.
The GM described…