The 30-year-old Vargas spent a little less than two weeks in the Majors this year with the Cubs before being designated for assignment and released. It was his second tour of duty with the Cubbies, having spent parts of the 2020 and 2021 seasons in Chicago. This year he managed to his just .130/.231/.348 in 26 plate appearances with the Cubs.
Vargas was originally signed by the Cardinals as an amateur free agent out of Venezuela back in 2008. Prior to his time in Chicago, Vargas appeared with the Diamondbacks (twice), Pirates, and Twins, with the brunt of his 407 career plate appearances coming with Arizona. For his career, reaching back to include every season since 2017, Vargas owns a ..227/.265/.354 line. He has primarily contributed at second base and third base, but he has also made appearances at shortstop and the corner outfield spots.
With the Nationals, he’ll serve as infield depth, especially useful given the recent injury to Alcides Escobar, Washington’s de facto shortstop. The Nationals are rolling with a 3-man bench unit right now, with Lucius Fox as the only reserve infielder.