The Orioles have acquired right-hander Damien Magnifico from the Brewers in exchange for international bonus slot No. 15, the teams announced. The No. 15 international slot comes with an assigned value of $885,300, per Baseball America’s Ben Badler. To make room for Magnifico on the 40-man roster, the Orioles have designated fellow righty Jason Garcia for assignment. Magnifico, in turn, has been optioned to Triple-A Norfolk by the Orioles.
In addition to possessing one of the best baseball names you’ll come across, the 25-year-old Magnifico is the owner of a career 3.98 ERA with 9.0 K/9 against 5.0 BB/9 in 63 1/3 career innings at the Triple-A level. He’s logged three innings in the Majors, all with the Brewers last season, and yielded a pair of runs on two hits and three walks without a strikeout. In that brief MLB sample, however, Magnifico averaged nearly 97 mph on his heater, and he induced grounders at a hefty 62.9 percent clip last year in Triple-A.
Garcia, 24, was a Rule 5 pick by the Orioles back in 2014 and spent a good chunk of the 2015 season on the disabled list. He still saw enough time on the active roster to remain property of the Orioles without being subject to further restriction, but he didn’t make the strides the O’s were hoping for in 2016. Garcia jumped straight from A-ball in 2014 to the Majors in 2015, where he appeared in just 21 games and logged 29 2/3 innings in the Majors with a 4.25 ERA and an unsightly 22-to-17 K/BB ratio.
He’s actually yet to appear at the Triple-A level after struggling through the 2016 campaign in Double-A and opening the 2017 season there as well. In 142 career innings of Double-A work, he’s struggled to a 4.82 ERA with just 5.6 K/9 against 4.0 BB/9.
The decision for the Orioles to jettison even more of their international signing money rather than to invest the money into amateur talent acquisition is somewhat puzzling. Baseball America’s Ben Badler offered a harsh critique of the Orioles’ international efforts (or lack thereof) earlier today, noting that Baltimore spent a mere $260K on just five international prospects during the entire 2016-17 signing period, while most clubs sign 25 to 30 players.