The Tigers announced that they have traded outfielder Jonathan Davis to the Marlins in exchange for minor league outfielder Brady Allen. Neither player had a 40-man roster spot prior to the deal so no corresponding moves will be required in that regard. Allen is expected to join the High-A West Michigan Whitecaps, reports Chris McCosky of Detroit News.
Davis, 31, has appeared in the five previous major league seasons, suiting up for the Blue Jays, Yankees and Brewers. He’s never been much more than a part-time player, having made 350 plate appearances over 171 games across those five seasons.
His best assets are speed and defense, which he has shown in his time in the big leagues, stealing 18 bases in 21 tries. In terms of the glovework, he’s been worth eight Outs Above Average in that limited showing, while Ultimate Zone Rating has him just slightly above average and Defensive Runs Saved exactly par. Unfortunately, he hasn’t been able to pair that with much offense, having hit .185/.291/.245 thus far.
He was outrighted by the Brewers last year and signed a minor league deal with the Tigers. He’s played 36 games for the Triple-A Toledo Mud Hens so far this season with a robust .258/.336/.516 batting line, hitting five home runs and swiping five bags already while playing all three outfield positions. It seems the Tigers didn’t have any immediate plans to get him into the mix and have let him off the leash by sending him to Miami.
The Marlins have been trying to solve their center field position for years and their plan this year was to move second baseman Jazz Chisholm Jr. out there. However, it was reported last week that he’s going to miss the next four to six weeks with turf toe. The club also has corner outfielders Avisaíl García and Jesús Sánchez on the injured list, further depleting their outfield depth. The Fish have been using Bryan De La Cruz, Garrett Hampson and Peyton Burdick as their primary outfielders of late, with Xavier Edwards and Jorge Soler mixed in as well. Davis will give the club another non-roster option as they look to get those injured players back to health.
By subtracting from their own near-term outfield depth, the Tigers will add a longer-term piece in Allen. The 23-year-old was selected by the Marlins in the fifth round of the 2021 draft. Between last year and this year, he’s made 630 plate appearances in 154 games between Single-A and High-A. He’s hit .250/.340/.376 in that time for a wRC+ of 107, striking out at a 25.6% clip while walking 11.4% of the time.