The Nationals made a minor league trade today, acquiring light-hitting outfielder Gregor Blanco from the Kansas City Royals for a player to be named later.
The Royals removed Blanco from their 40-man roster at the end of spring training. The Nationals will not add Blanco to their 40-man roster, and he will report to Class AAA Syracuse.
Blanco, 27, is the rare player with significant playing time – 836 plate appearance in 253 games over three major league seasons – with an on-base percentage higher than his slugging percentage. Blanco has reached at .358 clip while slugging .324. He has two homers in his career and 107 walks, with a .258 batting average.
In 269 plate appearances in the majors last year, Blanco hit .283/.360/.367. Midway through the year, he was traded from the Braves to the Royals as part of the deal that sent current Nationals center fielder Rick Ankiel from the Royals to the Braves.
This year at Class AAA Omaha (the Storm Chasers!), Blanco was 11 for 56 with 17 walks, which gave him a .384 on-base percentage. Blanco’s ability to reach base seems to make him a worthwhile player to take a flier on, especially given the minimal acquisition cost.