Superman Flies West
The Toronto Blue Jays have traded ‘Superman.’
Kevin Pillar is off to the San Francisco Giants for three players as the MLB club continued its radical roster makeover on Tuesday.
In return, the Jays acquired right-handed reliever Derek Law, utility infielder Alen Hanson and right-handed pitching prospect Juan De Paula.
The 30-year-old Pillar, a California native who is the longest-tenured Blue Jay, has been in the Toronto organization since being drafted in the 32nd round in 2011. He has played 695 games for the Jays, hitting .260 with 55 home runs and 231 runs batted in.
Pillar did not start Monday's game against Baltimore but delivered a pinch-hit sacrifice fly in a ninth-inning Toronto rally that fell just short and the Blue Jays lost 6-5.
Known for his fielding prowess, Pillar was known as Superman for his ability to climb high to get balls in the outfield. He is a three-time Gold Glove Award finalist (2015, 2016, 2017) and earned the 2015 Wilson Defensive Player of the Year for centre field.
Last season, Pillar hit .252 with 40 doubles, 15 home runs, and 18 walks over 142 games in 2018.
He joins Russell Martin, Marco Estrada, Troy Tulowitzki, Kendrys Morales, Josh Donaldson, Steve Pearce, J.A. Happ and Yangervis Solarte, all of whom have been moved in a Toronto teardown that started last season.
“This one hurts," tweeted Jays pitcher Marcus Stroman. "Been my locker-mate since 2014. Going to be crazy not having you there. Love you bro. Hope this move brings you joy and happiness for you and your family!"
De Paula, 21, is a minor leaguer ranked 19th among Giants' prospects by MLB Pipeline.