The Hanshin Tigers of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball announced Thursday that they’ve reached an agreement with former Angels infielder Jefry Marte (link via the Japan Times). There won’t be any compensation for the Angels, as Marte was outrighted off the 40-man roster and elected free agency earlier this winter.
Marte, 27, has spent the past three seasons with the Halos but struggled greatly in 2017-18 after a solid performance in his first year with the club. Back in 2016, Marte hit .252/.310/.481 with 15 homers and 14 doubles in just 284 plate appearances (114 OPS+), but since that time he’s limped to a dismal .199/.271/.346 slash in a combined 354 plate appearances. He split his time relatively evenly between first base, third base and left field back in 2016 but has spent the vast majority of his time on the field at first base in the two years since.
Though he doesn’t have much of a track record in parts of four seasons between Anaheim and Detroit, Marte has performed well throughout the upper minors. In 793 plate appearances at the Triple-A level, scattered across parts of three seasons, he’s a .270/.342/.463 hitter with 27 homers, 47 doubles and four triples. He figures to receive a fairly prominent role with Hanshin in NPB and should command a considerably higher salary than any he’d have earned bouncing between the minors and Triple-A in North America this season.